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Traditional Chinese Medicine

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is one of the oldest forms of medical treatment and it is a treasure-trove of remedies. These remedies have been refined and improved over 2000 years and have spread to the four corners of the globe. Whether you are in Japan, Korea, Europe, Australia, America, Canada, South Africa or where there is a Chinese community, TCM is there. TCM has grown into a global phenomenon and Hong Kong is no exception.

In the past century, the rapid development of modern science and medicine has brought us to the era of genetic research. Advances in modern medicine have to withstand the rigour of scientific scrutiny whilst TCM remedies have endured the scrutiny of time. This is why TCM has not lost any of her glories, but rather, has become extensively accepted. The main reason why TCM can withstand the test of time is its remarkable efficacy with minimal side effects.

Modern medicine emphasizes on anatomy and specialization, and it takes a etiological approach in addressing pathophysiological issues whereas TCM takes a holistic approach and views the human body as an integrated system. TCM does not look at systems or symptoms in isolation, but rather assess the patient in relation with internal organs, meridians, energy levels and other factors. Based on the Eight Guiding Principles involving yin and yang, exterior and interior, cold and heat and deficiency and excess; a diagnosis is obtained by applying the Four Techniques of diagnosis - inspection, auscultation-olfaction, inquiry and palpation. Syndromes are then differentiated, using a holistic and macro approach. These are the characteristics of TCM holistic approach and planning of treatment accordingly to syndrome differentiation.

The holistic approach used in TCM allows the human body to regulate itself through the balancing of yin and yang, blood and energy, and the functions of internal organs etc... allowing the vital organs to reach a state of equilibrium and the meridians to build a network for smooth flow of energy, thus achieving therapeutic efficacy. The method of holistic treatment used in TCM complements the etiological approach used in modern medicine and this is why the combined efforts of using modern medicine and TCM in the diagnosis and treatment of disease is the best approach.

TCM originated back in ancient times and thus the diagnosis is based on the influences of simple materialistic concepts. The changes of the four seasons and their effects on the physiology of the human body and pathological processes are incorporated in the theory of TCM. The changes of the season present a seasonal factor while differences in geographic location and thus differences in eating and drinking habits will create a geographic factor, and differences in physiology of the individual would be the human factor. Thus, when Chinese medicine practitioners prescribe herbal formulations, not only do they utilize the correlation of the Eight Guiding Principles and the Four Techniques of Diagnosis, they also have to account for the three factors, i.e. Season; geographic and human factors. In short, each and every prescription is tailor-made for the individual and this is one of the characteristics in the clinical practice of TCM.

TCM is especially effective in treating diseases of viral, functional and neurological origins such as influenza, cough (including intractable coughs), asthma, headache, nausea, insomnia, arrhythmia, stress, hepatitis, nerve pain, cervical disease, rheumatic pain, nasal and allergies, eczema, acne and diseases in women such as menstrual disorder, infertility, menstrual pain, menorrhagia (dysfunctional uterine bleeding), post menopausal syndrome, hormone imbalance, etc..

Besides treating ailments, TCM places great emphasis on restoring balance and homeostasis through the concept of re-vitalization. This is achieved by various means - through nutritional methods including food supplements, soup and adaptogens; through qi gong and emotional soothing to strengthen the body's defenses against diseases.

Man is part of nature, and to use natural remedies when disease occurs is one of the reasons why TCM is in demand even in this day and age of scientific discoveries.

 Biochemical, Immunological, Hormonal and Anti-Oxidant Effects of a Chinese Herb

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