Categories
Herbal Medicine

Tracing the Wind Part II, Implementing a Research Study for Covid19- Practical Application • Qi152

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The Chinese say 活到老學到老 hou dao lao, xue dao lao, which can be translated as “continue learning for as long as you live.” It’s good advice, and when it comes to the practice of medicine, it’s essential. Our work gives us an endless opportunity to learn and deepen our understanding.

In this conversation with Kathy Taromina, Craig Mitchell and Dan Bensky we discuss what they have been learning about using Chinese herbal medicine in responding to the symptoms of Covid-19, as they carry out a study that is being done at the Seattle Institute of East Asian Medicine.

Doctors of the past have left us a treasure trove of ideas and clinical strategies for treating epidemic illness and all of these methods are coming into play in our modern world, as we learn more about how the Coronavirus affects different people.

Listen into this conversation on how experienced herbalists are learning from the wide range of presentations that are showing up in the clinic. And how you can access the information that is being collected from this study for your own learning and use in the treatment of infectious illness.

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In This Conversation We Discuss:

  • How the treatments are done and the challenges of telemedicine
  • The full range of infectious illness models is showing up with Covid19
  • Dampness is an element that seems to tie together disparate symptoms
  • Apparently there are some issues with blood stasis with Covid
  • Studying Chinese medicine on Chinese medicine’s terms
  • The importance of differentiating pattern and differentiating disease
  • Chinese medicine is not industrial medicine
  • All methods of medicine are noticing that Covid causes serious problems with the fluids
  • It’s important to keep close tabs on your Covid patients, things can change quickly
  • One of the issues with using Chinese medicine is that we don’t fit so well in a factory/industrial world
  • Telemedicine can give us the opportunity to treat more infectious illness and get better at it
  • We need to be more prepared in terms of treating infectious illness
  • Learning to treat infectious illness is something that is within any practitioner’s grasp
  • Before the 1930’s any Chinese medicine herbalist worth their salt could treat infectious disease
  • Recovery is a problem for many people
  • Surprising things can happen with telemedicine. 

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Katherine Taromina, DACM, L.Ac
 Katherine is the Academic Dean and faculty for the Seattle Institute of East Asian Medicine (SIEAM).  She has been in clinical practice since 1998, practicing in both private practice and hospital-based settings.  

After 20 years of studying and eventually specializing in treating adults and children with cancer both on-therapy and into survivorship, she now teaches advanced classes and continuing education for practicing acupuncturists on topics relating to Chinese medicine as supportive care for cancer patients.  

Kathy is also a clinical researcher with an interest in the conducting clinical trials that will expand patient access to East Asian Medicine.

Craig Mitchell, P.hD, L.Ac
Craig Mitchell received a Master of Science degree in Traditional Chinese Medicine from the American College of Traditional Chinese Medicine in San Francisco (1993). Craig completed his PhD from the China Academy of TCM (Beijing) in 2006. He has written numerous articles and translated several Chinese medical texts, including On Cold Damage: Translation and Commentaries. Craig has been in private practice since 1993 and has been actively teaching since 1997. He is the President of the Seattle Institute of East Asian Medicine, where he is also a clinic supervisor and teacher. Since 1997, Craig has taught classes on Chinese herbal medicine, internal medicine, medical Chinese, acupuncture techniques, and tuina.

 

Dan Bensky, D.O.
I’ve been interested in things East Asian since I was a boy and stumbled into Traditional East Asian Medicine [TEAM] by chance in the early 1970’s. At the time it was not only very hard to find a place to study, it was even hard to know what or how to study. This sense of wonder has stayed with me for the past 45 years. My experiences, in Taiwan, Japan, China and the US have shown me that the greatest thing about this medicine is that it has so many tools that aid in being open to paying attention to and helping our patients on a multitude of levels. Similarly, engagement with the medicine demands that we dive into the traditions without being stuck in them so that we can connect to and be a part of them. I have been helped along this path when, again by chance, I became interested in osteopathic medicine in the late 1970’s and had the good fortune to go to Michigan State University where I was able to work with some amazing teachers. It became quickly obvious to me that TEAM and osteopathy were complementary on many, many levels and I’ve been working on integrating them and attempting to understand how each illuminates the other ever since.

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Categories
Acupuncture Herbal Medicine

Chinese Medicine & Covid19- The Perspective From China • Shelley Ochs & Thomas Garran • Qi151

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The Chinese and people of East Asia deal with epidemic disease on a regular basis. And every time a new bug comes to town, they learn a little more.

While we in the west have access to some of the classic materials on treating epidemics, we don’t have the same level experience. It’s not really our fault, epidemics don’t roll through here in the west as often, and even during the cold and flu season most people don’t seek us out first. So our skills are not as polished as we’ve not had the experience to hone our clinical skills.

In this speical edition conversation with Thomas Avery Garran and Shelley Ochs we discuss their new eBook on Chinese medicine and Covid-19.

Listen in to this conversation on how the Chinese are using traditional medicine at a scale we simply don’t see here in the west.

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In This Conversation We Discuss:

  • Introduction and How Shelly and Thomas ended up in Beijing
  • Working on their book about growing herbs
  • How did they write the COVID book
  • How to treat millions of people with herbs
  • How did those on the front lines stay healthy?
  • Are China’s numbers accurate?
  • Treating patients as they should be treated
  • Shelby and Thomas’s thoughts on the future of Covid and possible future waves
  • Important steps for immunity in Chinese medicine
  • Adjusting to treating during a pandemic
  • What have you learned from doing this book?

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Always listen to your patients with a empathetic and compassionate heart. Be willing to make a mistake, and more importantly, be willing to admit it and learn from it. We are all practicing.


Thomas Avery Garran, P.hD
I've been at this herbal medicine thing since I bought my first herb book in 1989 while traveling to California. Not long after that, I found Chinese medicine and instantly fell in love. I've never looked back and now integrate my initial love of herbs with Chinese medicine, which can be found in my first two books about using Western herbs in Chinese medicine (2008 & 2014). In fact, my PhD work here in China was a comparative study of history, genetics, and chemistry of European motherwort and Chinese motherwort.

I believe that the system of Chinese medicine is awesome and beautiful, and evolving. I enjoy learning about how others have interpreted our medicine's theory and find the study of how plant usage has changed over time fascinating and insightful. These are the pillars that inform me when I write a prescription; the understanding of how the theories and application of medicinals has evolved and must continue to do so to stay relevant.

In recent years I've become more involved with farming herbs including the practical and research aspects of that profession, which has captured my heart; the translation of Growing Chinese Herbs (2019) was a step to begin to bring authentic cultivation information to the English reader. While I continue to study and write about application of herbs, I have shifted a significant amount of energy to the production of our medicinal plants, from seed to finished product. This, I believe, is a major part of Chinese medicine that is missing outside of China and I am working to change that even as you read this.

 

Trust your sensory perceptions. We encounter patients with all of our faculties and being open to the full range of information they give us makes us the best practitioners we can be.


Shelley Ochs, Ph.D.
My first encounter with Chinese medicine was as a patient in Taizhong, Taiwan back in 1989 when a friend of mine strongly suggested I go to see his Chinese herbalist to help me with the recurring upper respiratory tract infections I was suffering from. The herbs worked like a charm and I was so impressed that I made him my family doctor from then on. That same friend later attended my graduation from ACTCM in San Francisco in 2000.

Before and after graduation, I was very fortunate to be able to work in free or low-cost clinics serving anyone who walked in the door, often including homeless people and those with a dual diagnosis of mental illness and drug addiction. I learned what acupuncture can do when it’s all you have. It was heart-wrenching work at times, but what I learned there about being a doctor is still with me today.

It’s been thirty years since I first began studying Chinese, and it’s led me through literature and politics to medicine, and finally to history and translation studies. My initial motivation was simply a desire to better understand the people who were a part of the dynamic culture and society of Taiwan in the early 90s. Later, as I entered the stream of classical Chinese medicine, I wanted to know how we might participate in a conversation with the recorded tradition that still informs and inspires many of our colleagues and teachers. I hope that my current work will help bring people who do not read Chinese into a more meaningful engagement with this living tradition.

In 2013 I completed a Ph.D. in the History of Chinese Medicine, focusing on what the legend of Bian Que tells us about cosmology and the origins of acupuncture in China. I plan to expand this now that more material has been excavated and write it up in English. More immediately, I am collaborating with others here in Beijing to translate texts that are both clinically and philosophically relevant to practitioners around the world.

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Links and Resources

Download and read Chinese Medicine & Covid19, and donate to help support the work.

Visit Thomas' Passiflora Press website for more information on the growing, research and production of Chinese herbs 

 

Join the discussion!
Leave a comment on Qiological's Facebook page.

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Categories
Acupuncture

World Grief-Transforming Trauma Through the Five Phases • Alaine Duncan • Qi148

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The airways are full of bad news, fear and conjecture it’s a hit parade of one scary thing after another. This alone would be hard our spirits if you ingest even a portion of the 24 hour media feed. Add on isolation and an unrelenting sense of an inescapable threat, it’s tough on one’s mental and emotional wellbeing. 

There is a pervasive sense of grief at the loss of a world that just a few short months ago operated in vastly different way. The physical and social distancing bring their own difficulties, and for anyone who’s carrying some buried away trauma it’s closer to the surface as the veneer of normality is stripped away. 

In this conversation with Alaine Duncan we look at how these times more easily surface lingering trauma and perhaps can give us an opportunity to resolve some insures from the past as we work through the challenges of the present. 

Listen in as we discuss the importance of attending to the fire/communication phase, and how the difficulties of this time can also be a catalyst for healing and change. 

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In This Conversation We Discuss:

  • Lack of control and what arises in us from that experience
  • The neurological response to a sense of inescapable attack
  • What can Chinese medicine practitioners do to work around the virus
  • Helping ourselves and others deal with previous traumas that are returning during coronavirus
  • Heart/Kidney transformation
  • What to do when dealing with trauma during coronavirus and you can’t see/interact with others
  • How do we work through a situation where our whole world is changing very quickly and we are grieving over things we are missing
  • It’s important to be able to orient to a threat
  • The healing power of high regard

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I have a unique approach to acupuncture treatment that integrates modern understandings of the neuro-biology of traumatic stress with ancient healing principles from acupuncture and Asian medicine. This clinical fascination has carried my heart and my feet to places and people I never imagined when I graduated from acupuncture school in 1990. The boundary between me and military families, immigrants, refugees, and survivors of natural and human-made disasters has grown more and more thin – and that is a gift of spirit. I love our medicine. I love what it can explain about life and how it can reach people whose life and health resides at the margins.

Asian medicine has a rich place at the interface of individual healing and social transformation. It has a lot of power to restore balance and regulation, not just for individuals, but for how those individuals relate to their families, workplaces, and our communal ballot box. We are pretty important to our planet and all who live on it.

I’m in that Earth phase of life – the time of collecting and distributing the harvest. I have a small practice at Crossings Healing & Wellness in Silver Spring, MD, am Chair of the Board of the National Capital Area Acupuncturists Without Borders chapter – volunteering free stress-reduction services to immigrants, refugees and neighbors in need. I helped develop the Integrative Health & Wellness program at the DC Veterans Administration Medical Center, serving there from 2007 – 2017.

 

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Links and Resources

Visit Alaine's website to learn more about her work and her book.

Here's an article from Alaine's blog that goes into the Five Phases and the self-protective response

 

Join the discussion!
Leave a comment on Qiological's Facebook page.

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Categories
Herbal Medicine

Trusting the Fundamentals- Using Chinese Medicine in the Treatment of Epidemic Disease • Heiner Fruehauf • Qi135

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For those of us in North America the world changed about three weeks ago as the Covid-19 began to make itself known. And as Chinese medicine practitioners begin to close their in-person practice and open up video visits with patients for herbal consultations there is an increasing interest in how we in the modern world, facing this particular pandemic, can use our medicine to help.

Heiner Fruehauf has been translating some of the writing and communications of his friend and colleague Dr Liu Li Hong who has been in Wu Han treating patients for a couple months now.

In this conversation we touch both on the one size fits all formulas that have shown effect in protecting staff from infection, and the importance of applying our Chinese medicine 辨證理論 bian zheng li lun, principles of differential diagnosis.

Listen into this report from the front lines of China, and how we can help our patients and each other as it is now our turn to confront this epidemic.

 

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In This Conversation We Discuss:

  • Background on the report from china
  • 合病 He Bing, 並病 Bing Bing, 兩感Liang Gan
  • In the preface of the Shang Han Lun we find that disease will not always follow a neat progression, and is descriptive of what is being seen with Covid-19 patients
  • Ma Xing Shi Tang can be considered for a Tai Yang/Yang Ming complexity syndrome, where there is cold on the outside and heat on the inside
  • Overlaps been Shang Han and Wen Bing perspectives
  • Do you really trust the medicine?
  • Using the prescriptions as a kind of reference tool for your own clinical reasoning
  • Attending to the syndromes that arise as a response of the body in relation to internal or external influences
  • The contradiction between a standardized formula being very effective in protecting doctors in a hospital and the perspective that differential diagnosis is essential for effective treatment
  • The critical distinction between 法fa, method and 方,fang prescription
  • The 五運六氣 wu yun liu qi perspective on why the “regular” flu was also severe this year
  • Being infected on the psycho-social-emotive level
  • Qing Fei Pai Du Tang
  • Some precautions practitioners can take for themselves
  • How it is the that Taiyang Urinary Bladder channel is a pre

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Heiner Fruehauf, P.hD, L.Ac

I have researched Chinese culture and medicine for 40 years, and was originally trained as a sinologist at the Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations at the University of Chicago. Due to personal health challenges, I engaged in the full-time study of the clinical aspects of Chinese medicine in 1989. After several years of post-doctoral studies in Chengdu, I founded the College of Classical Chinese Medicine at National University of Natural Medicine in Portland, Oregon.

My interest in preserving some of the traditional features of Oriental medicine led me to develop a database dedicated to the archiving of classical knowledge, where a selection of my publications can be accessed at ClassicalChineseMedicine.or). My strong belief in the clinical efficacy of Chinese herbal medicine lead me to establish the Hai Shan Center, a clinic in the Columbia River Gorge specializing in the treatment of difficult and recalcitrant diseases. Out of concern over the rapidly declining quality of medicinals from mainland China, I founded the company Classical Pearls that specializes in the import of wild-crafted and sustainably grown Chinese herbs (ClassicalPearls.org).

 

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Links and Resources

Visit Heiner's site on Classical Chinese Medicine.
His herb company Classical Pearls has some unique formulations.  

Articles about Covid-19 that Heiner has translated:
Dr Liu Li Hong's Report From Wu Han
The Dampness Epidemic: Exploring the Clinical Characteristics of COVID-19 in Shanghai

 

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Categories
Cultivation

Curiosity in the Time of Corona • Greg Bantick • Qi134

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Some of the difficulties faced by many of us in this time of pandemic are the disorientation, anxiety and fear that arise from uncertainty. But if you look more closely, you’ll see that there never is in this life the guarantee of certainty. It can feel that way because of habituation, but when you strip away the daily habits and sense of continuity, then the profound and often unbearable uncertainty that all self-aware mortal beings share, is always there.

These past few months in Asia and past few weeks in the western world have been tearing away at our sense of certainty and security. We fear for our lives, our livelihoods, families and increasingly… our communities as well.

In this conversation with Greg Bantick we look into how this ever-present moment arises from innumerable causes and conditions, and how curiosity can help us to more fully inhabit all the moments in which we find ourselves.

This is an episode that is not just for practitioners, your patients, family and friends could benefit from this conversation as well.

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In This Conversation We Discuss:

  • Living into the uncertainty
  • Grief for a way of life that is gone
  • Empty stores wake us to our connection with each other
  • The unrootness that arises without our usual problems and routine
  • The web of causes and conditions that lead to anxiety
  • Not adding the extra burden of self-criticism
  • Dealing with fear
  • Curiosity and gentle inquiry about our experience

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Greg Bantick, L.Ac

Greg Bantick, B.Ac., M.T.O.M. In 1975 he started studying Chinese medicine in Sydney, Australia. In the late 70's he was part of a small group that started the first Acupuncture college in Brisbane, while maintaining an active private practice. In 1982 he spent the year studying in China and Japan. On his return he arranged trips by several leading Chinese and Japanese scholar practitioners to Brisbane. I

n 1986 he moved to San Diego, where he began teaching at the new Pacific College of Oriental Medicine. Greg served in curriculum advisory roles and as a senior faculty member and clinical supervisor for over 14 years. He helped develop the Masters Degree program. In 2001 he was invited to be Academic Dean and Clinical Director of the Seattle Institute of Oriental Medicine. He returned to Brisbane in early 2005 where he maintains a clinical practice and teaches to the profession.

 

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Categories
Herbal Medicine

Considering Covid-19, Methods and Safety • Craig Mitchell • Qi130

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The coronavirus has not only found its way into our bloodstream and mucus membranes, it’s worked its way into our social fabric, economic relations and political disagreements. In this age of global electronic connection news of this new virus creates perhaps more noise than signal.

In this conversation with Craig Mitchell we discuss how the effectivness of Chinese medicine is based not on someone else’s successful prescription, but on our ability to skillfully apply our diagnostic methods. We also touch on the importance of not just treating this disease, but also being sure we don’t become vectors for its spread.

Doctors in the past have confronted these kinds of epidemics. Now it’s our turn at bat.

Listen in to this conversation that reminds us the power of our medicine lies in how we apply it, and the need to attend to limiting the spread of infection.

 

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In This Conversation We Discuss:

  • The importance of differential diagnosis
  • Walking into the treatment room with an open mind
  • Not spreading infectious disease is a responsibility we need to consider and take seriously
  • What guidelines to follow
  • It might be useful to consider strategies from the Wen Bing tradition
  • San Ren Tang and Hou Po Xia Ling Tang
  • There might be a damp component with Covid-19

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Three-Seed Decoction (sān rén tāng), while an excellent
formula for externally-contracted illnesses, can also be used for
internal conditions characterized by damp turbidity, perhaps plus heat, in the interior, causing symptoms such as low-grade or tidal fever, headaches, stifling sensation in the chest, and painful heavy body. The dampness may also hinder the middle burner, causing symptoms such as nausea, poor appetite, copious phlegm, thirst with no desire to drink, and unsmooth bowel movements, which may also be sticky.


Craig Mitchell, Ph.D, L.Ac

Craig Mitchell received a Master of Science degree in Traditional Chinese Medicine from the American College of Traditional Chinese Medicine in San Francisco (1993).Craig completed his PhD from the China Academy of TCM (Beijing) in 2006.

He has written numerous articles and translated several Chinese medical texts, including On Cold Damage: Translation and Commentaries. Craig has been in private practice since 1993 and has been actively teaching since 1997. He is the President of the Seattle Institute of East Asian Medicine, where he is also a clinic supervisor and teacher. Since 1997, Craig has taught classes on Chinese herbal medicine, internal medicine, medical Chinese, acupuncture
techniques, and tuina.

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Categories
Herbal Medicine

Special Episode- Treating the Coronavirus With Chinese Medicine • Jin Zhao • Qi126

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The coronavirus that emerged in Wu Han earlier in this year has disrupted travel and business and has been a deep cause of concern as doctors throughout the world, and especially in China, strive to understand the nature of this pathogen. Conventional medicine brings it’s modern research techniques to this inquiry. While those of us in the Chinese medicine world seek to understand this modern epidemic disease through the lens and prisms of Chinese medicine.

In this conversation with Cheng Du doctor Jin Zhao we discuss his perspective on the illness induced by the coronavirus based on the observations and experience of a number of doctors he’s working with along with his own experience and his perspective gleaned from his long term study of various schools of thought in Chinese medicine.

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In This Conversation We Discuss:

  • 瘟疫 wen yi, epidemic disease
  • The hospitals are full and sometimes people waiting to get in will turn to Chinese medicine
  • The Coronavirus is seen as a cold damp toxin
  • Ideas for treating this comes from the Wen Yi Lun and the Shi Re Bing Pian
  • Key Rx are Hou Po Xia Ling Tang and Jia Jian Zheng Qi San
  • Key herbs include, hou xiang, hou po, ban xia, and fu ling
  • Seasonal climatic factors that influence the situation in Wu Han
  • These patients tend to have thick, white, greasy tongue coatings
  • For some patients the condition will stay cold, but in others it turns to heat
  • No one formula for prevention as we have to consider a person’s unique constitution
  • Frequence with which the herbs need to be changed
  • Paying attention to the tongue coating is key in treating this illness
  • Consider the effect of western pharmaceuticals on the patient’s condition

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Doctor Jin Zhao

Jin Zhao is a busy clinical practitioner and professor of Chinese medicine in Cheng Du. He comes from a family of herbalists and has a particular interest in understanding and blending the various schools of thought in Chinese medicine.

 

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Links and Resources

The books Jin Zhao refers to are the:
吳又可 (瘟疫綸)
Discussion of Warm Epidemics, by Wu You-Ke

薛雪  (濕熱病篇)
Writings on Damp-Heat Pathogen Disease, by Xue Xue

The Main formulas that he uses as a base are:
藿樸夏苓湯, Hou Po Xia Ling Tang

加減正氣散
Modified Zheng Qi San

Here's an example of the kind of tongue you'll see with the coronavirus.

 

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