Evidence Based Medicine (EBM) has not eliminated the need for the somewhat elusive clinical mental activity called “problem-solving.” Every systematic review presents the interpretation of an “expert,” whose biases remain largely invisible to the consumer of the review. In addition, meta-analyses cannot generate evidence where there are no adequate randomized trials, and most of what clinicians face will never be thoroughly tested in a randomized trial.
Herbal medicine plays a mainstream role in insurance-reimbursed, government regulated, medical care in China and Japan. An estimated eighty five percent of Western trained allopathic physicians in Japan and China, use Kampō (Japanese traditional medicine) and traditional Chinese medicine respectively in daily practice. The standard of medical care is the same in Japan and China as it is in the United States.
This paper entitled "Ma Huang (Herbae Ephedra): Setting the Record Straight" appeared in the Journal of Chinese Medicine, February 2016 issue. The article presents the Western biochemistry of ephedrine and pseudoephedrine (the pharmacologically active ingredients in Ephedra), and the Chinese medicine application of the whole herb, Ephedra. The paper reviews the proper uses of the Chinese herb in anti-asthmatic formulas, and the improper applications of the herb in combination with caffeine for weight loss.
The MaHuang Story
Written by Dr. Elvove MD, PC, Home Health Update.
Posted with Dr. Elvove's kind permission.
To evaluate a particular vaccine, it is helpful to compare it to the image of a "perfect vaccine". A perfect vaccine would protect a person from a dangerous infectious disease that exists in the community, and would have no harmful side effects.
I recently read an article in Science [Science 346 (6216 Suppl) 2014] about the integration of TCM and Western medicine. In response, I would like to propose the following: TCM and Western medicine have different strengths and independent approaches to understanding and explaining health and disease, and therefore, they have the potential to be complementary. They are in no way mutually exclusive. Nobody will argue with the fact that in an emergent life-threatening situation, the best place to be is in a state-of-the-art American hospital. Western medicine excels at saving lives.
In September 2013 a case report I authored was published in the peer-reviewed Journal of Chiropractic Medicine on the successful use of acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine to manage a case of chronic prostatitis with pelvic pain syndrome. This case report is an important contribution to the medical literature because it documents the use of a conservative treatment modality with no side effects to manage a chronic and incurable condition. The typical treatment to manage this condition is the long term use of pain killers.
One of the branches of Traditional Chinese Medicine is the theory of the Five Elements.
The Five Elements (Spring-Wood, Summer-Fire, Late Summer-Earth, Fall-Metal and Winter-Water) are based on the four seasons, with the addition of late summer to make five. Observations were made about the types of illness that abound during these seasons, and the practice of Traditional Chinese Medicine teaches that optimal health can be maintained by preparing for the changes that the seasons bring.