External Applications in Anthroposophic Nursing

Ginger Kidney Poultice

Kind of substance


Guiding principle

The external application of ginger to the kidneys stimulates vigorous inner warmth in the body, which can spread to the periphery. The soul is invited to join more intensively with the body, which can be seen in deepened breathing, among other things. The patient can calm down. Emotional and physical tension can be released.


  • To stimulate the warmth organism (see example case)
  • Burnout syndrome
  • Fatigue syndrome (see example case)
  • Hypertension (see example case)



  • Work fast
  • Observe the patient carefully: circulation, intact skin
  • Apply the compress as hot as possible – despite high fever!

  • Ginger root powder
  • A wooden board
  • Outer cloth: wool
  • Intermediate cloth: cotton, ca. 140 cm long
  • 2 inner cloths: fabric torn to size, ca. 20 x 20 cm
  • Small terrycloth towel: 20 x 30 cm, between the compress and the intermediate cloth to protect the patient’s clothing
  • Mug
  • Hot water, ca. 80°C (176°F), only a small amount

  • Lay the 2 inner cloths on a wooden board
  • Make 2 ginger poultices: put 4–6 tablespoons of powder into a mug (not plastic), stir with hot water to a creamy mash
  • Apply the mash approx. 1 cm thick and the size of the palm of your hand to each one of the inner cloths
  • Spread the mash on one half of the cloth, lay the other half on top and fold the edges backwards to form a small packet

Instructions at the bedside
  • Lay the wool and cotton cloths on the bed at kidney height
  • Quickly place the two packs on the kidney area. Leave the spine free
  • Mold the cotton and wool cloths in place
  • Duration: 20 minutes

  • Remove everything, dispose of the poultice, dry the cloths
  • Post-treatment rest: 30 minutes

Well-proven in many patients
By doctor’s prescription, 1 x daily up to twice a day for a short time; then according to the patient’s condition and the results.
Onset of effect
An improvement can already be seen after the first treatment
Length of therapy
According to the patient’s condition, may be 1–2 weeks
A reddening of the skin may occur; intolerances are unknown

Instructions to download

Case example

The patient was in hospital because of fatigue syndrome, with sleeplessness, strength loss and concentration disorders. There were also arterial hypertension and palpitations.
During 2 weeks she received 6 kidney treatments as part of an overall therapeutic concept. Already after the first application she was able to sleep deeply.
All of her complaints improved during the course of the treatment: quality of sleep, blood pressure, strength, restlessness coming from the heart, inner mood, concentration. She showed a rosy complexion and her extremities were significantly warmer.


Red., BH