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Articles and Perspectives on East Asian Medicine

A Journey into Gentle and Simple

By Acupuncture, Asian Culture, Clinical Perspectives , History

One is faced continually in MT with the question: How much treatment (stimulation) does this patient truly need? The belief is that it is not helpful to stimulate beyond this ideal minimum. Consider this analogy: If you are feeding a guest, it is not useful to force more food on him than his stomach can accommodate. So it goes with acupuncture. We likely, according to the view of many senior Japanese acupuncturists, are…

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By Acupuncture, Clinical Perspectives , East/West Integration, Herbal Medicine, Neuromusculoskelatal

FM begins often following an infectious, or other medical disease, which can lead to retained pathogenic factors. It may also result from trauma, blood loss, chronic stress or chronic diseases. Stress, trauma and retained pathogenic factors result in obstruction and often also, secondary unstable Yang (Yin-Fire, Empty-Heat, Wind etc.) which can mani­fests as facilitated sympathetic nervous system and may depress..

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Reflections on the German Acupuncture Studies

By Acupuncture, AOM Research, Clinical Perspectives 

When clinical research studies are undertaken it is important to know why the studies were done and for whom.  Sometimes the reasons and target audience for a study become confused as researchers try to answer different questions for different reasons in the same study.  Additionally, in acupuncture trials there have been calls for many years to ensure that the tested treatment is valid and that an appropriate control…

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Jade Windscreen Powder

By Case Histories, Clinical Perspectives , Herbal Medicine, Internal Medicine, Theory and Diagnosis

I’m one of those people. I had easily caught colds for most of my life. I wish it were not so. I remember reading about yù píng fëng sân (Jade Windscreen Powder) and thinking my troubles were over. But, after taking it for a week or so, I woke one winter night in a panic thinking the house was on fire. It was not, but I had this odd smell of burning paper in my nose. Which followed me around for a few days until I stopped…

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Some Thoughts on Active Points

By Acupuncture, Clinical Perspectives 

The concept of acupuncture points in Japan is unique. This is due in part to the history of setting aside the concept of meridians and treating points in their own right. In Japan active points are commonly called tsubo and these active points, rather than being fixed in location, are moveable changeable phenomena. As living phenomena, the active points in our body are in a constant state of flux so naturally their locations differs from person to person. Active points, or tsubo, are most often regarded as being tight or tender points. Many other “differences” are associated with active points, however…

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Dissecting Acupuncture and IVF Studies

By Acupuncture, AOM Research, Clinical Perspectives , Women's Health

Is there any proof that acupuncture improves fertility? Savvy patients and evidence-seeking western medical professionals will undoubtedly ask this question of any acupuncturist specializing in fertility treatment. When answering the question, what research studies should be cited? Should the research be applied to practice – and in what way? While the body of western-styled evidence is quite small…

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The Assessment and Management of Upper Extremity Epicondylitis

By Acupuncture, Clinical Perspectives , Neuromusculoskelatal

The simplest means of assessing the presence of a cervical component in your patient is by performing a palpatory exam of the cervical and upper thoracic spine. When doing so, you most often encounter an ipsilateral muscular guarding in the segments just inferior to the segment of injury and a bilateral muscular restrictive process in the T4…

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Beware the Rampaging Hun

By Clinical Perspectives , Emotion/Spirit, Theory and Diagnosis

Everyone cultivates something; a few even do it with conscious intention. Our lives are a qigong practice, because we breathe life into every moment. The quality and flow of an individual’s post-natal qi (qi and blood) makes its mark on his or her constitution. People often place habitual demands on their jing-essence, and hence imbue a degree of jing stagnation into their lives. Those stagnations often remain incipient for years…

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The Use of Acupuncture in the Management of Cancer

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

I have heard it said by several people that cancer patients should not receive acupuncture, as it can “spread the cancer”. There is, as far as I can tell from a fairly extensive literature search, conversations with others, and many years of experience, absolutely no grounds for such an assertion. In my experience, cancer is far more likely to metastasise (spread) when the patient’s overall health deteriorates…

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The Prevention of Miscarriage using Chinese Herbal Medicine

By Clinical Perspectives , Herbal Medicine, Internal Medicine, Women's Health

Female patients around 40 years old experience a miscarriage rate of nearly 50% with IVF. With the help of Chinese medicine, the rate of miscarriage can significantly be reduced and the pregnancy can be supported to reach full term. The most important rule to remember is not to move the qi too forcefully or quicken the blood…

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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, I added Bai Shao in order to soften the Liver and relax spasm, as well as to preserve the yin in the presence of so many draining herbs..

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Re-Establishing Optimal Health Postpartum

By Clinical Perspectives , Dietary Therapy, Herbal Medicine, Internal Medicine, Women's Health

During pregnancy, a woman’s blood volume almost doubles in order to support the placenta and the developing fetus.  The “work” of labor and delivery and blood loss further depletes the mother’s qi and blood.  And because breast milk is formed from the same substrate as blood, breastfeeding is comparable to a constant loss of blood.  For all these reasons, women are often qi and blood deficient postpartum…

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