To many in the west TCM or Traditional Chinese Medicine is something new. To help explain the basics of how it is done Dr. Gao has written the article below.
How did the Traditional Chinese Medical doctor treat patients?
First: The Chinese doctor needed to make the diagnosis using 4 methods:
1. Observation: to inspect the patient’s facial color and tongue color
2. Hearing & smelling: to hear the patient’s talking, breathing, coughing
3. Inquiry: to ask the patient’s history of the diseases.
4. Palpation: to take the patient’s pulse, skin, limbs and chest
Second: the good Chinese doctor treats the patient’s imbalanced body, not the name of the diseases. In western medicine they are trained to treat the specific part in need of fixing and often fail to see the whole system.
There are 9 body types in TCM:
1. Normal or “even” body type is healthy body
2. Yang deficiency type is very cold body
3. Qi deficiency type is fatigue body
4. Damp, phlegm and heat type are impatient and angry body
5. Damp, phlegm and cold type are overweight body
6. Yin deficiency type is an aversion to heat body
7. Blood stagnation in a body leads to poor memory and more prone to developing cancer
8. Qi stagnation type is easy to get depression and anxiety body
9. Allergy and over-sensitive type are easy to get allergy
Third: Get all the information to make a diagnosis using the following theories:
1. Identification of patterns according to the eight principles
2. Use of the Five Elements theory
3. Qi, Blood, Blood Fluids, Mind (shen)
4. The functions of the internal organs
5. Identification of patterns according to pathogenic factors
6. Six stages, four levels and three burners
Fourth: Engage in treatments
About the author: Dr. Shanwen Gao has operated the Chinese Acupuncture Clinic for 11 years in the Denver area. She teaches at the Colorado School of Traditional Chinese Medicine and has degrees from Guangxi College of Traditional Chinese Medicine and the Dongguk Royal University.