Part II—Symptoms and treatment plans (1)
Our last blog mentioned there are 5 categories of hypertension based on TCM. Today let’s look at the symptoms and corresponding treatment plans of the first two of them.
Recommended Herbal Medicine:
Pills of Six Ingredients with Rehmannia (Liu Wei Di Huang Wan)
Effect: Nourishing yin and supplementing kidney. It has a phenomenal effect on deficiency of the kidney-yin, dizziness and vertigo, tinnitus, deafness, emission, night sweat, hectic fever due to yin-deficiency and diabetes.
Recommended Herbal Medicine:
Gastrodia Elata (tianma) and Uncaria rhynchophylla (gouteng)
Gastrodia Elata is used for calming the liver and treating headaches, dizziness, tetanus, and epilepsy. From a nutrition point of view, its root has been shown to exert novel pain relief and inflammatory-mediating activities.
Uncaria rhynchophylla is most frequently used to relieve headache, clear heat and calm the liver wind. It has an anti-inflammatory effect and immune-modulatory effects against cancer. It is one of several dozen herbs being promoted these days as an effective treatment, even a potential cure, for cancer, AIDS, chronic fatigue syndrome, candida infection, arthritis, and other disorders for which western medicine is often unsatisfactory.
Today, we have covered the first two categories of hypertension. Another two categories will be discussed in our next blog.
Part I—Understanding high blood pressure
Hypertension is the most common of cardiovascular diseases. It usually does not cause obvious symptoms. Long term high blood pressure, however, is a major risk factor for coronary artery disease, stroke, heart failure, peripheral vascular disease, vision loss, and chronic kidney disease. And it has become a threat to human health and one of the main reasons of death.
High blood pressure is classified as either primary (essential) high blood pressure or secondary high blood pressure. About 90–95% of cases are primary, defined as high blood pressure due to nonspecific lifestyle and genetic factors. Lifestyle factors that increase the risk can include excess salt, excess body weight, smoking, alcohol, and stress. The remaining 5–10% of cases are categorized as secondary high blood pressure, defined as high blood pressure due to an identifiable cause, such as chronic kidney disease, narrowing of the kidney arteries, an endocrine disorder, or the use of birth control pills.
Both TCM doctors and western doctors have invested a tremendous amount of manpower and resources to find answers for hypertension and certain solutions have been found. But you have to be wise and visionary to choose the right one. Western medications have a quick effect in responding to the symptoms of hypertension, but with unresolved headaches, dizziness, palpitations, tinnitus, insomnia, and other symptoms. Moreover, long-term medication will cause side effects on the liver and kidney functions or require you to increase your dose to maintain the effect.
Featuring treating the root cause of a disease instead of responding to symptoms, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has a definite advantage in treating and curing hypertension. It has been discovered in TCM that kidney deficiency is the fundamental cause of hypertension disease. Correspondingly, the therapeutic principle of nourishing kidney-liver yin, warming kidney yang and the tonifying of kidney active blood was developed in curing it. Modern medical lab results and clinical trials have testified to the efficacy of the kidney therapeutic principle.
According to TCM, hypertension can be classified into 5 categories: Kidney deficiency syndrome, Liver Yang hyperactivity syndrome, Transformation of liver Yang into wind, Phlegmatic-damp syndrome and blood stasis syndrome. Each category has different common symptoms and corresponding treatment plans. We will discuss each in detail in our next blog.
So that I don't get in trouble from the copyright police please read WebMD's article at (http://www.webmd.com/balance/guide/chinese-medicine-topic-overview?page=1)
It's interesting that they refer to TCM (a form of medicine that has been used for over 4000 years) as a "belief". As if it is not a true form of medicine. They do however, admit that it is gaining in popularity in the west. One point for them. In their statement "Chinese medicine doctors look at the balance of body, mind, and spirit to determine how to restore qi, the yin-yang balance, and good health." Without explaining that it is an involved art and science. In other words each person is considered as a whole and not just parts. One thin effects another! I seem to remember way back when, when I was a child that we had a general practice doctor that knew everything about our family and life too. In other words TCM focuses on maintaining health and then on healing and curing a disease process once it is identified. With me they quite literally rolled back the clock and corrected almost all of the challenges I faced after my stroke and reigned in my hypertension so that it is rare for me to need medication.
I know hundreds of doctors personally and practiced in the US medical system for years before heading to China and after every meeting I had with them I was encouraged to except myself as I was and be content with the challenges that remained after the stroke.
WebMD stats, "Promising results have been found for the use of acupuncture in treating nausea and vomiting related to chemotherapy, postsurgery pain, and pregnancy" an "Acupuncture also may be useful for other conditions such as addiction, stroke rehabilitation, headache, menstrual cramps, tennis elbow, low back pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, and asthma. In general, acupuncture is safe when done by a certified acupuncturist. The treatment can be expensive and time-consuming."
I would agree that TCM is slower because it is promoting healing and can be very expensive in the US but here in China the cost is extremely reasonable. As long as TCM is limited in its ability to be practiced in the US I guess I'll be helping people to get access to the best treatments here in China.