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LONG PERIODS OF CUPPING MAY CAUSE BLISTERS

Cupping therapy is usually performed to detoxify the body or to reduce a body's "heatiness".

Mr Lau, the traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) physician whom Mr Fang consulted told TNP that blisters may form when the cups are placed on the skin for too long.

He added: "It is probable that the infection Mr Fang contracted was due to the damage done to his skin."

Mr Lau also noted that there are no regulations when it comes to performing cupping therapy.

While TCM physicians require licences to practise, masseurs in spas do not need a licence to perform the procedure.

When TNP sent Dr Tey Hong Liang, a consultant dermatologist at the National Skin Centre photos of Mr Fang's blisters, he said they were likely a result of the cupping therapy he received.

But he could not comment on the medical benefits of cupping therapy.