Articles and Perspectives on East Asian Medicine

The Sinew (Tendino-Muscular) Meridians

By Acupuncture, Classics, Clinical Perspectives , Neuromusculoskelatal

The Sinew meridians are called Jing Jin. The character Jin represents something forceful, bamboo, inside the body. That is it is the power of the muscles, which like bamboo are striated and have regular intervals, knots. The Sinew meridians can be seen as muscles regions which can be tapped into at the knots, just like bamboo can be cut at the knots, and which provide the animation/rhythm of muscular movement….

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A Description of the Therapeutic Uses of Aconite by the Ming Dynasty Scholar-Physician Zhang Jingyue

By Clinical Perspectives , Herbal Medicine, History, Internal Medicine

Yu Bo once said: “Fuzi has the capacity to bestow a fundamental quality of invigorating vitality, and an effect that can break through all engrained blockages. It can draw all qi tonic herbs deep into the twelve channel networks, and thus restore severely dissipated original yang. It can draw blood tonic herbs deep into the blood layer….

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The Importance of Aconite (fuzi) and Teachings From the Sichuan Fire Spirit School

By Clinical Perspectives , Herbal Medicine, Internal Medicine

Insomnia and anxiety are typically defined as being yin-deficient conditions in TCM. Due to the depleting effect of our modern lifestyle however, there is usually an underlying yang deficiency present in these patients. Stress can be defined as a situation when we spend our (yang) life-force rather than safeguarding and storing it…

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Fu Zi: Revered and Feared

By Clinical Perspectives , Herbal Medicine, Internal Medicine

In the case of Fu Zi, or aconite, processing dramatically changes the fresh root from being a deadly poison, to an herb that is hailed as “King of the 100 Herbs”. Because it is highly toxic in its raw form, it has been demonized by Western medicine researchers who usually study the root without understanding or taking into account the precise processing and decoction methods required. Though there are many…

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Treating Dry Macular Degeneration with Acupuncture

By Acupuncture, Case Histories, Clinical Perspectives , Internal Medicine

When it comes to the retina, in ancient times, it was not even recognised as a separate part of the anatomy. Now we know it is anatomically part of the brain and nervous system. Consequently spontaneous degeneration of the retina has a similar aetiology and pathology to spontaneous degeneration of the brain and peripheral nerves…

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Comments on and Excerpt of Translation of a Warm Disease Treatise

By Classics, Clinical Perspectives , Herbal Medicine, History, Theory and Diagnosis

The Gǔang Wēnyì Lùn is a 17th century book discussing the clinical appearance of and treatment strategies for a variety of warm disease entities. The date of publication and even the authorship are uncertain though investigation of sources makes it seem likely it was published between 1675 and 1695 A.D. and the author was one Dài Tiān-zhāng..

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Channel Palpation

By Classics, Clinical Perspectives , Internal Medicine, Theory and Diagnosis

While traditional pulse palpation is observation of the internal environment through the medium of blood vessels, channel palpation may be thought of as diagnosis through observation of interstitial fluid pathways.  Classical physicians believed that the openings and spaces one feels when palpating the channels not only make up a crucial part of physiology, but can also reflect the state of internal organs…

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Clinical Experience in the Treatment of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

By Acupuncture, Clinical Perspectives , Herbal Medicine, Internal Medicine, Theory and Diagnosis

When the Triple Burner functions smoothly, all qi in the body flows smoothly and all Fire in the body circulates endlessly.  In SLE patients, the Triple Burner is obstructed, qi and Blood do not flow smoothy and there is disharmony between ying qi and wei qi.  Insufficiency of ying qi and Blood and loss of control of the defensive exterior…

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Checking for Possible Herb-Drug Interactions

By AOM Research, Clinical Perspectives , Herbal Medicine, Internal Medicine

The issue of herb-drug interactions looms large over the practice of herbal medicine. Up to now there have been few incidents recorded of clinical herb-drug interactions. After the first such reports emerged in the 1990s, a concern has been raised: that we know so little about herbs and their potential for interaction with drugs that these incidents could be just the “tip of the iceberg.”. In actuality, the issue has been largely overblown…

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A Bitter Taste in the Mouth: A Case of Cholecystitis

By Case Histories, Classics, Clinical Perspectives , Herbal Medicine, Internal Medicine

In the formulas used above, the essence of both Xiao Chai Hu Tang and its cousin Da Chai Hu Tang can be seen. Of these, Da Chai Hu Tang is more commonly indicated for the treatment of cholecystitis. In prescribing, however, I considered Xiao Chai Hu Tang as the core formula because the tongue coat was not yellow, the pulse wiry but not forceful, the stool was normal and there was no irritability. At the second visit…

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Postnatal Depression

By Acupuncture, Case Histories, Clinical Perspectives , Herbal Medicine, Women's Health

The commentaries included within the Ji Yin Gang Mu note that there are three major approaches to post-partum emotional disorders. One focuses on “bad blood” (bãi xué) left over after the birth, which rushes to and disrupts the Heart shen. Another emphasises blood deficiency resulting from the birth process and its attendant traumas.  The last points to pathogenic wind taking advantage of…

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Gu Syndrome: Treating Chronic Inflammatory Disease with Chinese Herbs

By Classics, Clinical Perspectives , Herbal Medicine, Internal Medicine, Theory and Diagnosis

Gu syndrome has not just been mentioned in a single classic, but every notable book by every master in the past generally featured a chapter on Gu syndrome, because it was such a major part of what a Chinese doctor practicing anywhere between 500 BC and the 1940’s was facing.  We should add here that Gu is not an anthropological phenomenon, a bizarre disease in the swamps of ancient China that does not exist anymore,.  Quite the contrary…

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