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Theory and Diagnosis of Traditional Chinese Medicine

TCM appeared in the ancient China as far as in the Yellow Emperor's Canon of Medicine (compiled in about 475 to 221 B.C.) - believed to be the earliest medical monograph of China, for about over 3000 years of experience.

Basic Theory

Traditional Chinese Medicine

TCM practices include such treatments as Chinese herbal medicine, acupuncture, dietary therapy, and both Tui na and Shiatsu massage. Qigong and Taijiquan are also closely associated with TCM. Major theories include: Yin-yang, the Five Phases, the human body Meridian/Channel system, Zang Fu organ theory, six confirmations, four levels, etc.

TCM believes that the human body is a small universe unto itself that is a complex system of subsystems of energy and matter, and that these systems work together to maintain a healthy human mind and body. The characteristics of the operation of the system/subsystems of the human mind/body are described in terms of the five elements (metal, water, wood, fire and earth), Ying/Yang organs, deficiency/excess, emptiness/fullness, hot, cold, wind, dampness, pathogenic factors, internal/external, meridian channels, chi (several different types), essences, body fluids, vessels and more.

The body concept in TCM is based on a functional description of human mind/body processes, as opposed to discrete tissues, or specific organic compounds. As a result of using this functional approach to describing the processes of the human mind/body it is possible to treat the entire human mind and body not just the mind or just the body through the therapies available in this system.

Meridians System

Traditional Chinese Medicine

In Chinese medicine, invisible pathways in the body that circulate the flow of blood and, link the individual to cosmic forces or influences, protect the body against external causes of disease, and regulate the yin/yang balance.

Chinese medicine practitioners usually take use of human body points through fire cupping, acupuncture and so on to treat the patients. It is one of the most important part of TCM

Traditional Chinese Medicine
Traditional Chinese Medicine


Traditional Chinese Medicine Following a macro philosophy of disease, traditional Chinese diagnostics are based on overall observation of human symptoms rather than "micro" level laboratory tests. There are four types of TCM diagnostic methods: observe (望 wàng), hear and smell (闻/聞 wén), ask about background (问/問 wèn) and touching (切 qiè).The pulse-reading component of the touching examination is so important that Chinese patients may refer to going to the doctor as "Going to have my pulse felt."

  • Palpation of the patient's radial artery pulse (pulse diagnosis) in six positions
  • Observations of patient's tongue, voice, hair, face, posture, gait, eyes, ears, vein on index finger of small children
  • Palpation of the patient's body (especially the abdomen, chest, back, and lumbar areas) for tenderness or comparison of relative warmth or coolness of different parts of the body
  • Observation of the patient's various odors
  • Asking the patient about the effects of their problem
  • Anything else that can be observed without instruments and without harming the patient
  • Asking detailed questions about their family, living environment, personal habits, food diet, emotions, menstrual cycle for women, child bearing history, sleep, exercise, and anything that may give insight into the balance or imbalance of an individual