An Overview of Traditional Chinese Medicine: Part 2

An Overview of Traditional Chinese Medicine: Part 2

Traditional Chinese Medicine is able to treat the root (or source) of an illness because it utilizes pattern diagnosis. Pattern Diagnosis consists of tongue and pulse diagnosis, listening to the patient’s symptoms, and looking at the patient’s color and movement. According to Giovanni Maciocia in The Foundations of Chinese Medicine, pg. 127 “…the nature of the pattern is often related to its specific cause of disease.” The pattern that is looked for involves a combination of signs and symptoms that have a foundation in yin and yang theory. These patterns indicate that the body is hot or cold, deficient or excess, whether the illness is internal or external, etc. The pulse indicates the state of the organ systems, meridians, blood, qi (energy), yin (fluids of the body), and yang (body circulation and warmth). Looking at the patient’s tongue is like looking at a mirror of the patient’s body system and can indicate to the practitioner if certain channels and/or organ systems are hot or cold, deficient or excess, and more.

Chinese medicine is able to prevent illness before it occurs and to effectively treat an already existing illness. These treatments harmonize all parts of the person. The diagnostic methods utilized allow a practitioner to recognize a pattern of illness before it manifests symptoms for the patient. Because each person’s body is unique, a single western medicine diagnosis can have several different TCM diagnoses.

Yin and Yang are emblems of the fundamental duality in the universe, a duality which is ultimately unified,” as stated in Acupuncture, a Comprehensive Text from the Shanghai College of Traditional Medicine.

Written by,

Yasmin Spencer LAc, DAOM, Dipl. OM
427 F Street, Eureka, CA 95501





  • “Acupuncture, a Comprehensive Text,”  The Shanghai College of Traditional Medicine, translated and editied by John O’Connor and Dan Bensky.
  • Giovanni Maciocia, “The Foundations of Chinese Medicine” pg. 127
  • Spiritual Pivot, Chapter 17, by Wu Nian Jian
  • Five Branches University education  (MTCM)

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