Cupping Glass

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Cupping Glass


a small round glass with thick smooth edges, a wide bottom, and a capacity of 30 to 70 cubic centimeters.

Exerting suction on the skin, the glass causes congestion and hemorrhages in deeper layers and thereby helps to bring about resolution and resorption in inflammations of the underlying organs and tissues. To make the glass cling to the skin, the air inside is exhausted by introducing for a very short time a lighted piece of cotton wadding wound on a small stick and moistened with alcohol or ether. After the lighted cotton is removed, the glass is quickly placed flat against the skin.

Suction cups were used even in antiquity. Metal, glass, hollow horns, and other vessels of various shapes and sizes were used. The air in the cups was removed by heating or suction.

Cupping glasses are prescribed for inflammations of the lungs, bronchi, and pleura, for congested blood in the lungs, and in neuralgia, myositis, and other diseases.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.