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. The Sinew meridians are the conduits of Wei Qi. Wei Qi warms, protects, activates upright…

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A Description of the Therapeutic Uses of Aconite by the Ming Dynasty Scholar-Physician Zhang Jingyue (1583-1640)

By Clinical Perspectives , Herbal Medicine, Internal Medicine, Uncategorized

By Zhang Jingyue (1583-1640) Translated by Heiner Fruehauf National University of Natural Medicine, College of Classical Chinese Medicine The flavor of Fuzi is pungent and sweet, and becomes extremely salty if immersed in brine. Its qi is very hot. This herb, therefore, carries within the energy of yang within yang. It is described as toxic. Its (toxic) effect is controlled by Renshen (ginseng), Huangqi (astragalus), Gancao (licorice), Heidou (black beans), Lüxijiao (green rhinozerus horn), Tongbian (human urine), Wujiu (Herba Stenolomae), and Fangfeng (siler). While stimulating…

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

By Clinical Perspectives , Herbal Medicine, Internal Medicine, Uncategorized

On February 19, 2009 Heiner Fruehauf, Ph.D., L.Ac. sat down with his colleague Bob Quinn, DAOM, L.Ac., to discuss the importance of aconite (fuzi) in classical Chinese medicine. The discussion also covers aspects of the fuzi story not covered elsewhere in the west, namely its proper processing. Heiner also touches on some of the “nuts and bolts” of the Sichuan Fire Spirit School of herbal prescribing. As Heiner explains, fuzi used to be referred to as the “King of the 100 Herbs.” This information is…

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Fu Zi: Revered and Feared

By Clinical Perspectives , Herbal Medicine, Internal Medicine

Fu Zi, or Aconite, has long been considered one of the most important herbs in the Chinese materia medica, yet many herbalists are afraid to use it because of its potential toxicity.  This herb is a poster child for the effective and essential use of pao zhi, or processing methods, commonly used with Chinese herbs.  Historically, many herbs are traditionally processed in various ways, each method and substance used bringing out different qualities in a given herb.  This no doubt adds, enhances or decreases particular…

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Treating Dry Macular Degeneration with Acupuncture

By Acupuncture, Case Histories, Clinical Perspectives , Internal Medicine

Chinese medicine is superior to orthodox Western medicine in the treatment of many conditions, including eye diseases. It is often quicker, cheaper, and more long lasting in its effect. There are, of course, some situations when Western medicine is preferable to Chinese medicine, though these are relatively few. The key to the effective treatment of eye disease is an idea that appears in the Nei Jing, where associations are assigned between parts of the eye and the internal organs. While the eye as a whole…

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Comments on and Excerpt of Translation of a Warm Disease Treatise

By Clinical Perspectives 

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 戴天章. It seems most agree that it was a response to the earlier book Discussion of Warm Epidemics, Wēnyì lùn 溫疫論, by Wú Yòu-kě. Wú Yòu-kě’s and subsequently…

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Channel Palpation

By Classics, Clinical Perspectives , History, Internal Medicine, Uncategorized

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 in the presence of dysfunction.  In fact what we call “the channels” are not actually made of the skin, nerves, tendons, bones, vessels…

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Clinical Experience in the Treatment of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

By Acupuncture, Clinical Perspectives , Herbal Medicine, Internal Medicine, Uncategorized

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 means that qi is deficient and pathogenic factors can invade, with external Fire stirring internal Fire  Fire diffused throughout the Triple Burner or exuberant Heat…

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Checking for Possible Herb-Drug Interactions

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

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. The exaggerated depiction came about because evidence of interactions remains largely the…

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A Bitter Taste in the Mouth: A Case of Cholecystitis

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

I am offering this case study as encouragement for all in our profession as we proceed with often unheralded successes in areas where Western medicine has heroic, but sometimes less acceptable solutions. To quote one of The Lantern editors: “It is always important to remind everyone – ourselves included – what is possible with Chinese medicine.” I was privileged in this case to have the complete confidence of my patient and her faithful compliance with treatment, and especially fortunate to be provided with the report…

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