Medical Advances in China

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China M.D.
China was one of the first countries to have a medical culture. Compared to that of Western medicine, the Chinese method takes a far different approach. With a history of 5,000 years it has transformed into a deep and immense knowledge of medical science, diagnostic methods, theory, prescriptions and cures. Chinese medicine is mostly derived from nature, instead of being invented. According to many history statistics, the earliest medicine was discovered in the age of Emperor Huangdi, around 5000 years ago. As with the many advancements throughout time in China’s medical techniques, there were also much advancement and evolutions in their medical instruments, these progressive changes helped paved the way for the medicine world in the future.

One principle of Chinese medicine is the relative property or Yin and Yang. “The Physiology of Chinese medicine holds that the human body’s life is the result of the balance of yin and yang.”1 Yin is the inner and negative principles, and yang, is the outer and positive principles. The main reason why humans contract any form of illness is because these two aspects lose harmony. Looked at from the recovery function of organs, Yang functions to protect from harm from outside forces while Yin protects from the inside and provides energy for its counterpart. Another principle that the Chinese medicine culture follows is that of basic substance. “Doctors of traditional Chinese medicine believe that vital energy, energetic particles, state of blood, and body fluid are the essential substances that composed together to form the human body, and the basis for internal organs to process.”1These substances are channeled along a network within the body. On the physical aspect of this principle, the vital energy serves to promote and warm which belongs to the properties of Yang. The blood and body fluid to moisten organs possess the properties of Yin. Many of these principles are connected to heal an individual. Although these principles and theories seem almost deranged to the Western population of the world, many doctors still use these techniques today in modern time. Many traditional Chinese medicine doctors can cure countless patients without any aid from apparatuses or medical instruments but only a physical exam. They follow four methods of diagnosis, these four methods consist of: observation, auscultation and olfaction, interrogation, pulse taking and palpation. The method of observation indicates to the doctor to directly watch the outward appearance to know a patient’s condition. The exterior and interior correspond immediately, for example, when the inner organs run wrongly, it will be shown through the skin, tongue and facial sensory organs. The method of auscultation and olfaction is a way for doctors to collect data through hearing the sounds of the body and smelling the odors of the body. The method of interrogation suggests that doctors question the patient and his or her relatives to know the symptoms and evolution of the illness or disease and previous treatments. The taking of the pulse and or palpation allows for the doctor to note the pulse condition of patients on the radial artery. “Doctors believe that when the organic function is normal, the pulse, frequency, and intention of pulse will be relatively stable, and when not, variant.”1 When treating a disease traditional Chinese medicine doctors combine all the collected facts from the four methods of diagnosis to analyze the source and merit of the disease. The doctors then make sure what prescription should be given. In traditional Chinese medicine science, the drugs prescribed are different from the West, because doctors have discovered the medicinal effects of thousands of herbs over a long period of time. Before taking the medicine, the patient would have to boil it. There were and are many different ways to fight illnesses and infections through acupuncture and massage. Today though, western medicine...
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