Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Cupping, a method of medical practice which was formerly held in great esteem, but is now much less frequently employed. The theory of cupping consists in this - that by drawing blood to the surface, inflammation and congestion of underlying deep-seated organs may be relieved. Cupping is, for example, still employed in nephritis, or inflammation of the kidneys, the cupping glasses being applied over the lumbar regions. In former days recourse was so commonly made to cupping that professional cuppers found it a simple matter to earn a, livelihood by the practice of their art. Cupping glasses are receptacles of four to six ounce capacity; a little spirits of wine can be burned expanding the air contained in the glass, which latter is then clapped upon the skin. The rarefied air condenses, a partial vacuum is produced, and the result is the production of swelling in the skin confined beneath the edges of the glass. This is the process of dry cupping. In wet cupping, after producing the local congestion, it is the practice to incise the skin with a lancet or "scarificator," and to encourage the flow of blood, if necessary, by further cupping. Wet cupping is now practically a thing of the past.