The earliest recorded evidence of cupping was first discovered in Egypt in a document called “Ebers Papyrus” dating from 1550 B.C. The treatment was widely used for conditions such as fever, vertigo, muscular pain, painful periods and to improve the immune system to help people recover from their illnesses more quickly. Egyptian cupping was introduced to the Greeks and eventually spread to ancient cultures in many countries of Europe and even America. In recent history, European and American doctors widely used cupping in practice into the late 1800’s.
Cupping however is more traditionally associated with the oriental practice and has been used in China for thousands of years. The Chinese used to include cupping during surgery to divert the blood flow from the surgery site.
Written records from 28AD indicate the beliefs that ‘acupuncture and cupping, more than half the ills cured’. Chinese medicine observes that cupping dispels stagnation of Blood and Chi. Along with external pathogenic factors that invade a weakened constitution. A depleted constitution is often a result of depleted ‘jing or chi’ or original essence. This usually progresses to a weakened ‘wei chi’ or defence (immune system).
North American natives and Africans use buffalo horns as cupping vessels and women healers in villages continue the practice, passed down through family tradition.