Having practiced and studied Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) for more than 25 years, I have had the incredible good fortune to visit the source of this incredible healing art 12 times on my visits to China. During those trips, it is usual to visit the most infamous Traditional Chinese Medicine Academy's and Institutes throughout the country.
Observing pulse diagnosis being conducted by a 30 year master of TCM is an experience in itself as this veteran will often spend up to 30 minutes with the patient just analyzing the pulse. I always find this so interesting that so many of our Western counterparts feel they can do as thorough of a job in less than one minute or even up to three minutes for that matter. Tongue diagnosis plays a major role in the TCM practitioners regime, I always wonder how our Western practitioners derive such incredible insight by glancing at the tongue for a few moments when the Chinese master spends a considerable length of time studying and analyzing.
To practice TCM by way of herbal or acupuncture application, it is imperative one know what conditions exists by proper analysis of numerous factors and to be able to pick the appropiate diagnosis from the Classical Syndromes, Disorders and Pathologies which exist. The following is a list of what the TCM practitioner must distinguish from.
(SYNDROMES OF SAN
QI PATHOLOGIES BLOOD
DISORDERS PHLEGM DISORDERS
It must be borne in mind, the ancient Chinese physician did not have an understanding of anatomy,physiology and diagnosis that we in contemporary times have. They were forced to rely heavily on the above thought processes which by and large are incredibly superior in perhaps most diagnosis compared to what the allopathic internist makes today. Those practitioners who are well versed in TCM can effectively treat disease processes with explanations which are totally foreign to our western thought process and in fact make little sense to one not versed in TCM. It truly is an entirely different profession.
However, just as we have Republicans and Democrats and Straights and Mixers , we also have Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) practitioners and Contemporary Chinese Medicine (CCM) practitioners. Don't be fooled into thinking that if you are not well versed in TCM, that you cannot be effective as an acupuncturist or Chinese herbalist. The bottom line, is the percentage of patients that respond favorably in the CCM or TCM practitioners office is literally the same.
Today, there are a number of classical TCM herbal formulas available to the non TCM practitioner which utilize Western diagnosis and thought process, to prescribe and achieve the same clinical response which would take years of study into the depths of Traditional Chinese Medicine. These herbal formulas take the Western trained doctor and now enables them to prescribe ancient formulas which until now have been totally restricted to the master herbalist and practitioner of TCM.
Contemporary Chinese Medicine (CCM) is a new descriptive term for those practitioners who practice acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, tui na (manipulation) and who are achieving outstanding clinical results without being immersed in the academics and time constraints of ancient TCM. These are contemporary times, we are contemporary doctors and most of all we are dealing with contemporary patients. Welcome to CONTEMPORARY CHINESE MEDICINE (CCM).
Have a marvelous Holiday Season and the best to you in 1996 the year of the Rat!!!!!!!!
JOHN A. AMARO D.C.,
FIACA, Dipl.Ac. (NCCA)