Dr. Yang’s Chinese Medicine Assessment for Severe Acne
Acne is a common skin disease which most often affects:
2). Women before the menstrual period,
3). Women after taking, or stopping, birth control pills,
4). Some patients that have a family history of acne.
Chinese Medicine describes the etiology of acne as an imbalance in internal physiological and energetic
systems, where this imbalance produces heat, toxic stagnation, and blood stasis in the body. Therefore,
treatments should address the imbalance in these systems, clear heat, reduce toxicity, and move blood stasis.
Dr. Yang has used Chinese Medicine to treat patients for over 22 years. These patients came from many
different countries, and have all received effective results, decidedly including those patients with severe acne.
The following is an assessment of the findings of Dr. Yang’s research.
Severe acne patients commonly experience:
1). Long-term acne (some have it only a few years, others have it for 10 years or more).
2). Massive amount of large pimples covering large areas.
3). Acne appears on various places such as the face, the chest, neck, shoulders and back.
4). Patients may use different acne treatment products (e.g. cream and medicines), which are effective while
still actively in use, but acne returns after stopping taking such products. These products may also be
ineffective for some patients.
5). Patients with cystic acne (big and deep pimples).
Dr. Yang’s protocols for treating acne usually only takes one week to be effective, and after two months of
treatments, most patients have their acne problem under control. Once the acne is under control, another
month of treatment will usually stabilize the condition more completely.
Signs of effectiveness after one week of treatment:
1). Pimples decrease in size
2). Decrease of amount of pimples (though there will likely still be a few new pimples here and there)
3). Change in the color of the pimples
4). Smaller acne scabs that decrease in size or disappear.
Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs Treat Symptoms of Allergies
Allergies are a very common problem, negatively affecting both health and quality of life for many people. While the
majority of allergy sufferers experience only short term problematic symptoms, others undergo protracted bouts of allergic
symptoms, to the point that allergies may plague them for their entire lives. Individuals can be affected by a variety of
allergic diseases, and allergies may appear at any age. Allergies may present with a variety of signs and symptoms,
including nasal, respiratory, and dermatological problems. The most common allergic diseases are rhinitis, asthma,
eczema, allergic dermatitis, contact dermatitis, and urticaria.
The signs and symptoms of nasal allergic rhinitis are coughing and postnasal drip; allergic shiners (dark circles under the
eyes caused by increased blood flow near the sinuses); the “allergic salute” (in a child, persistent upward rubbing of the
nose that causes a crease mark on the nose); and conjunctivitis, or itching watery eyes (an inflammation of the
membrane that lines the eyelids, causing red-rimmed, swollen eyes, and crusting of the eyelids). The signs and
symptoms of respiratory allergies (often asthma) are a feeling of tightness in the chest, breathlessness, cough and
wheezing. The signs and symptoms of dermatological allergies (often eczema, contact dermatitis and urticaria) are red,
itchy, inflamed skin or welts (hives).
The most frequent causes of allergy problems are: pollens, mold spores, house dust mites, animal dander, foods, insect
bites or stings, plants, insect spores, environmental conditions (such as cold temperatures). Not all of the factors that
cause allergies are known, but allergic flare-ups are often related to seasonal changes (especially in the Spring), attacks
of the common cold, and food allergies (like milk, dairy, eggs, gluten, wheat, sea food and peanuts). The standard
methods of treatment for regulating allergies, in particular immunotherapy “allergy shots”, have not been proven to be
significantly effective, have potential side effects, and may need to be long term treatments to remain at all effective.
Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine can help to treat symptoms of allergies, and supplement Western medical
treatments. Traditional Chinese Medicine considers the allergic responses that a person’s body manifests to be an
imbalance between the exterior immunological defenses of the body, environmental factors, and the harmonious
relationships of various internal physiological systems. The key is our body’s reactionary response. Even when in
identical circumstances, different people respond to their environment in different ways. It is not at all uncommon for
people who live and work in similar environments, and who even eat similar types of food, to have distinctly different
responses to the allergens in their immediate vicinity – some will never even sneeze, while others may experience
extreme allergenic reactions. The question is why some people have allergy attacks and others do not, and why people
tend become more allergy prone with age.
People begin to experiences allergies because each person’s body has internal changes that take place over time. Some
of these changes are shifts toward an imbalance in their biological and immunological systems, meaning that they
become more susceptible to allergenic factors in their environments. The way to treat this is to re-balance a person’s
body and biological systems, with emphasis is on strengthening the immune system.
Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine have a long history of treating allergic symptoms. Since the 1960’s in China,
many research projects have been conducted on the treatment of allergic symptoms, and the results have consistently
shown patient improvement without side effects.
Dr. Yang has used acupuncture and Chinese herbs to treat allergic symptoms in both the U.S. and in China. He has had
very positive medical outcomes, especially for patients who have had severe allergic symptoms, even among those who
have undergone long term treatments for symptoms with allergy shots. These patients have experienced relief of their
allergenic symptoms and even stopped “allergy shot” therapy, and remain symptom free. Many patients do not
experience a recurrence of allergic symptoms, even during “allergy season”, for many years after treatment.
Dr. Yang’s protocol for treating allergy conditions address nasal congestion and obstruction first, and most patients feel
more free flowing nasal inspiration within the first two to three minutes following the initial acupuncture treatment
procedure. Many symptoms continue to improve within a short period of time, and the symptoms will further diminish with
follow up treatments.
Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine Can Benefit Those with Arthritis and Pain
Arthritis is a condition characterized by chronic pain in the joints, along with swelling, numbness and stiffness, loss of
movement and range of motion. It is often accompanied by emotional issues such as depression, stress, anxiety and insomnia,
which can exacerbate the pain and frustration of the condition. Along with these symptoms, a patient may also experience
fatigue and an inclination to catch colds. Some patients lose their jobs, and see their quality of life substantially undermined due
to arthritis. While arthritis is defined by the experience of pain in the joints, patients often undergo diminished functional
conditions throughout the body. This causes a lowered quality of life, and affects not just the patient, but entire families.
Acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine can treat this debilitating disease effectively without using drugs, pain killers
and Cortisone shots. Even though TCM is new to most Americans, it has been treating arthritis for over two thousand years – it
is often quite effective for patients, and does not have the side effects that many drug treatments can have. Chinese medicine,
including acupuncture, Chinese herbs, food therapy, Tuina (Chinese Massage) and Tai Ji Quan (Tai Chi, one of Chinese style
exercises) can substantially reduce most patients’ pain, while greatly improving their range of motion and stability.
Acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine have a history spanning more than two thousand five hundred years in China.
These modalities are used to treat a variety of diseases including pain, osteo-arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Acupuncture is
the first and immediate choice for patients with chronic pain in China. According to Chinese medicine, arthritis is due to either
an imbalance of the body, or a deficiency of body. Unregulated intake of food, improper lifestyle, occupational causes, weather
changes, environmental conditions, and emotional changes can all cause what is described as “qi stagnation,” or a low flow of
energy, which leads to pain, numbness, swelling and stiffness. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine can relieve joint pain, and
the combination of strengthening the body, proper diet choices, developing skills for psychological and emotional selfregulation,
and preparing for weather changes with the seasons will also provide significant benefit to all patients. Acupuncture
and Chinese medicine can relieve pain that may be more localized to one part of the body, or that extends to the entire body,
treating pain from the inside to the outside of the body. Notably, these forms of treatment can offer help to some patients who
may have marked difficulty with other therapeutic modalities.
Subsequent to initial research done in China in 1958 on the effects of acupuncture for analgesia during surgical procedures,
many research projects investigating acupuncture and electro-acpuncture as treatments for pain have been undertaken. The
results have consistently shown that acupuncture and electro-acupuncture have the ability to improve many painful conditions.
They have been determined to be safe, with no adverse side effects, and can even increase the adaptive and regulatory ability of
circulatory and immune function. Long-term monitoring of patients who have undergone these treatments show that they do not
undergo side effects such as addiction, fatigue, disrupted sleep patterns, poor memory, or emotional changes. Even aspirin, a
very common medication for pain, can cause stomach ulcers or generalized bleeding, side effects that acupuncture and electro-acupuncture
do not have. Acupuncture has been recognized as a treatment for chronic pain in the United States since the
1980’s, and significant research has been conducted in medical colleges across the country focusing on acupuncture for pain
and arthritis since 1995. Other common uses for acupuncture and electro-acupuncture are stress, anxiety, depression, obsessive
/ over-thinking, and insomnia. Patients with arthritis tend to find their conditions much improved, and their accompanying
symptoms – such as fatigue, stress, anxiety, depression, insomnia, addiction, immune system weakness, etc. – were all notably
Dr. Yang has protocols with acupuncture/electro-acupuncture, auricular acupuncture, food therapy, herbs, Tuina and Tai chi for
arthritis, pain and mental disorders. Using his more than twenty four years of clinical experience and research, he has helped
hundreds of patients with various health problems. The education that Dr. Yang can provide to patients for their own self-care
is regularly of great benefit to those with arthritis, and can vastly improve the patients’ quality of life.
Traditional Chinese Medicine in the Prevention and Treatment of Cardiovascular Diseases
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), including Chinese herbal medicines and acupuncture, has been used in the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular diseases in China since the 1950s. Through research by the integration of TCM and Western Medicine (WM), many of the classic herbal formulas that effectively treat cardiovascular diseases have been screened out, and many new herbal formulas have been designed and created (depending on mechanisms of the cardiovascular disease). This integration of TCM and Western medicine has developed new concepts, methods, and strategies for the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular diseases. Presently in China, Chinese herbal medicine treatment for cardiovascular diseases includes single herbs, herbal formulas and extracted agents of herbs.
Clinical research on the TCM treatments of cardiovascular diseases focus on common cardiovascular problems such as coronary heart disease, angina, myocardial infarction, arteriosclerosis, restenosis after percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty, cardiac arrhythmias, congestive heart failure, hypertension, hypotension, cardiomyopathy, hypercholesterolemia, viral myocarditis, peripheral vascular disorders, Raynaud’s phenomenon and disease, thromboangitis obliterans, venous thrombosis, etc.
Mechanisms of TCM for the treatment of cardiovascular disease work to engage with multiple levels of disease and simultaneous therapeutic targets, including anti-ischemic injury, such as impacting myocardial apoptosis and apoptosis related gene bcl-2 and bax expression; influencing RNA synthesis and gene expression related to nitric oxide synthase; effecting myocardial energy metabolism, protecting mitochondrial ultrastructural damage; effecting ventricular remodeling after acute myocardial infarction; promoting angiogenesis; protecting vascular endothelial cells and inhibiting vascular smooth muscle cell proliferation; preventing restenosis after percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty; inhibiting thrombosis by effecting the microcirculation, anti-platelet, influencing lipid metabolism, and thus anti-atherosclerosis, and so on.
Detailed historical information about treatments:
The earliest clinical articles of TCM treatment of CHD are found in China beginning in 1955. They introduced case-by-case clinical discussions and very little basic research. Clinical data in the 1960s gradually increased and elaborated on the etiology and pathogenesis of the disease, treatment rules, classification type, treatment principles, and determinations of preliminary efficacy. In the 1970s, clinical data and theory increased significantly. The Chinese herbal medicines that are used to treat CHD and angina are from decoctions developed into a variety of formulations such as tablets, patches, pills, soft pills, oral liquids, granules, aerosols, extracted agents and injections, as well as mouth sprays which are suitable to relieve angina. These medicines have greatly improved the clinical value of TCM treatments for coronary artery disease.
Presently, there are millions of patients with CHD in China that are treated effectively with TCM yearly. Herbal medicines are used in both Western Medicine hospitals, Chinese Medicine hospitals and clinics everywhere, with very small and infrequent side effects.
There are experiments and clinical research currently exploring the potential mechanisms of the Chinese herbs for CHD. These researches are finding that Chinese herbs could regulate blood lipids, anti-platelet aggregation thrombosis, and anti-ischemic injury, improve endothelial function, act as anti-atherogenics, stabilize vulnerable plaque, and protect microvascular integrity.
TCM is not only applied to the prevention and treatment of CHD and Angina, but also for the treatment of AMI. Research found that Chinese herbs that quicken the blood and dispels stasis also increase coronary blood flow, reduce myocardial oxygen consumption, inhibit platelet aggregation and anticoagulant thrombolytic protection of the ischemic myocardium; the studies also show that Chinese herbs improve platelet functions, increase inhibition of thrombosis, scavenge free radicals and reduce myocardial infarction size and thrombolysis.
Percutaneous Transluminal Coronary Angioplasty (PTCA) is one of the effective treatments for CHD but chance of restenosis is very high. Since 1991, there have been clinical studies on Chinese herbs and formulas for the prevention and treatment of restenosis after PTCA in China. The studies indicated that the Chinese herbal formulas and extracted agents of the Chinese herbs are effective and safe as therapeutic agents in preventing restenosis after PTCA. According to the research results, Chinese herbal formulas and extracted agents of the Chinese herbs prevented the stenting localized vascular regeneration and reduced the chance of restenosis.
Dr. Chen KeJi’s team reported that using classical herbal formula Xue Fu Zhu Yu Tang (XFUYT) for therapeutic intervention inhibits percutaneous endovascular angioplasty smooth muscle cell proliferation, reduces arterial intima-media thickness, and regulates gene expression and other roles. Other research, using capsules made with ChuanXiong and ChiShao (CXCS) (as the main ingredients in XFUYT) prevent coronary restenosis after balloon injury on porcine subjects. The data showed that CXCS can effect gene and protein expression of smooth muscle cell proliferation and apoptosis, effect transmembrane signaling, and effect accumulation of collagen; all of which can prevent restenosis formation.
There is a long history of treating the main symptoms of arrhythmia with classical herbal formulas. Experimental research has shown that Chinese herbs and herbal formulas are effective treatments for arrhythmia since the 1970s, but the clinical research suggests a weak role for TCM in the treatment of serious arrhythmias. At that time, the majority of clinical research focused on the TCM treatment for sick sinus syndrome. The utilization of herbs and herbal formulas to warm yang and tonify qi can increase the heart rate and improve the symptoms of sick sinus syndrome. Some pharmacological medicine experiments showed the potential mechanisms of these classical herbal formulas. For example, the warm-yang herbs such as Aconite can excite β-receptors and increase heart rate; Cinnamon and Cistanche may change the structure of the nucleus, regulate synthesis of DNA, RNA, and protein, improve SA node conductivity and increase heart rate.
Since the 1990s, new theories and methods focusing on the balance of Yin and Yang for regulation of the SA node have been developed. Chinese herbal formulas were designed to adjust heart rate to the normal rate by reducing fast rate while enhancing slow rate. One formula that consists of many Chinese herbs exhibited its greatest feature as a broad spectrum control of arrhythmia functions and was shown to control the various types of fast and slow heart rate.
The typical example is Shen Song Yang Xin Capsule (SSYXC). The study results showed that SSYXC is beneficial to non-organic premature ventricular contractions, paroxysmal atrial fibrillation, brady-arrhythmias such as sinus bradycardia, sick sinus block, slow-fast syndrome, and sinus sick sinus syndrome. There are no known side effects. SSYXC has the characteristic of integrated adjustments to anti-arrhythmic conditions. SSYXC can improve myocardial metabolism disorders, adjust cardiac pacing conduction system function, regulate cardiac autonomic function, and improve myocardial blood supply by regulation of the sodium, calcium, potassium and other cardiac ion channels. The components and functions of SSYXC, along with its advantages of multi-ion channel blockade and non-ion channel regulation, provided the electrophysiological basis for anti-arrhythmia in clinical trials.
TCM has been used for the treatment of symptoms similar to CHF such as edema, scanty urination and dyspnea for over two thousand years. The earliest reports of TCM for the treatment with CHF in China appeared in the 1970s. The commonly used classic Chinese herbal formulas to treat CHF are therapeutically effective and still in use in China today. This TCM formula is used in combination with Western medicine for the treatment of acute heart failure (AHF) as well as chronic heart failure. For example, Sheng Mai injections were developed from decoctions of the classic formula Sheng Mai San (powder for pulse activating) is applied in acute heart failure, such as AMI and other AHF. Further, single herbs and extracted agents of Chinese herbs are developed and utilized effectively for the treatment of heart failure.
Clinical observation shows that TCM treatment of CHF can enhance heart function, improve symptoms, and increase the quality of life of patients. One of the greatest features of TCM diuretics in the treatment of CHF is not causing dehydration and electrolyte imbalance. TCM treatments of CHF are particularly suitable for those patients in the early stages of CHF who cannot tolerate the serious side effects of Western medicines or who have severe heart failure with cardiac diuretic vasodilators which are ineffective. TCM treatments are also suitable for senile patients with CHF, who usually only use small dosages of similar medicines to digitalis because of hypoxia, reduced kidney function, and side effects of digitalis, where the dosages limit the degree to which the efficacy can be satisfactory.
Recently reported findings showed that TCM treatments that tonify Qi (pronounced Chee, meaning energy) and quicken blood in the treatment of CHF can significantly reduce the heart wall thickness, essentially blocking the occurrence of ventricular remodeling. The TCM treatments make for a strong heart, initiate diuretic action and the dilation of blood vessels, and can inhibit excessive activation of the neuroendocrine system, reducing myocardial remodeling, and improving the heart functions of patients with CHF.
Dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) is the most common type of cardiomyopathy, and has non-specific treatments. There have been reported of TCM combining with Western medicine since 1985. Understanding of TCM for the disease’s treatment is in continuous development, and has also achieved positive effects. There is great advantage for TCM combining with Western medicine for improving the DCM patients’ symptoms and signs, adjustment of cardiac function, improving patient survival, and increasing their quality of life. For example, a classical Chinese herbal formula Zhi Gan Cao Decoction (ZGCD) has been used for the treatment of DCM with heart failure and arrhythmia.
Results of research have shown that the Integrative Medicine (IM) approach of a combination of ZGCD and Western medicines is more effective than routine Western medicine therapies alone after a treatment period of twelve months. The IM group saw improvement in the left ventricular end-diastolic diameter (LVIDD), left ventricular mass index (LVMI), left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF). It was concluded that Integrative Medicine for DCM can effectively improve the cardiac function and clinical symptoms, inhibit myocardial fibrosis and reverse ventricular remodeling, and reduce readmission rates. Further animal experiments also confirmed that ZGCD in the treatment of DCM SD rats can improve heart function, inhibit excessive activation of the RAAS system, and reduce animal mortality.
Hyperlipidemia is the primary risk factor for atherosclerosis related to many cardiovascular, cerebrovascular and a variety of other diseases that are directly related to the incidence of coronary heart disease, myocardial infarction and stroke. Aggressive treatment of hyperlipidemia can significantly reduce the morbidity and mortality of cardiovascular and cerebrovascular disease. Western medicine in research and treatment of this disease has achieved great results, but these treatments tend to require large doses of medication in order to maintain long-term efficacy of their lipid-lowering effects. Unfortunately, however, long-term medication are likely to cause adverse liver and kidney function, and blood lipids rebound after discontinuing the use of these medications. TCM has undergone research in the treatment of hyperlipidemia in China since 1980. The results of research has shown that the lipid-lowering herbs and herbal formulas of TCM for the treatment of HLP has weaker roles than Western medicine in some respects. However, the markedly lower incidence of side effects during long-term use provides a substantial advantage; moreover, their effects were not insubstantial: these herbal treatments significantly improved symptoms in clinical research in China.
The TCM formulations used in clinical to treatment of hyperlipidemia include single herbs, extracted agents of herb and herbal formulas. They are also effectively used to treatment of atherosclerosis, coronary heart disease and angina in China. For example, Di Ou Xin Xue Kang (DOXXK) is extracted from a Chinese herb that quickens blood and dispel stasis. Studies have shown it regulates heart function, increases coronary blood flow, improves myocardial blood supply, and reduces myocardial oxygen consumption with remarkable efficacy for the treatment of ischemic heart disease. This herbal formula simultaneously lowers blood lipids and blood viscosity, enhances red blood cell deformability and improves microcirculation, so that it improves the whole body’s oxygen carrying capacity. DOXXK has been used for the treatment of hyperlipidemia, atherosclerosis, coronary heart disease and angina in China.
Xue Zhi Kang (XZK) is another lipid regulator refined and extracted from specially made red yeast. In recent years a large number of clinical observations proved its reliable efficacy and lower incidence of side effects. This extracted agent has been used in the treatment of hyperlipidemia in China as well.
Commonly used Chinese herbs for effectively treating hyperlipidemia are Dan Shen, Pu Huang, Shan Zha, Hu Zhang, He Shu Wu, Ju Ming Zi and Ze Xie; and Chinese herbal formulas are Xu Fu Zhu Yu Tang, Fu Fang Den Shen Wan, Er Chen Tang.
Pharmacological studies have shown that these single herbs and Chinese herbal medicine can positively regulate lipid metabolism, inhibit lipid absorption, affect the circulation of bile acids, inhibit lipid synthesis, act as anti-peroxide agents, raise HDL, lower LDL, and lower blood lipids.
1) Chen Keji, Cardiovascular disease and activating blood circulation to remove stasis, Beijing Science and Technology Press, 2009.
2) Gu Chunhua, Wu Yiling, Tian Shuyan, Effect of Shensong Yangxin Capsule on Ventricular Premature Beat and Cardiovascular Autonomic Nervous Function in Patients with Coronary Heart Disease, Chinese Journal of Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine, 2005-09
3) Jin Zhenyi, Pu Jielin, Sun Shu, LI Ning, Qin Xiaozhi, Effect of Shensong Yangxin Capsules on sinus bradycardia and cardiovascular autonomic nervous function, Chinese Traditional Patent Medicine, 2009-08
4) Jin Zhenyi, Zhang Xuehua, Jin Hua, Qin Xiaozhi, LI Ning, Pu Jielin, Observation of therapeutic effect of Shensong Yangxin Capsule on bradycardiac arrhythmia[J]; Chinese Traditional Patent Medicine;2010-08
5) Zou Jian-gang, Zhang Jian, Jia Zhenhua, Cao Kejiang, Evaluation of the traditional Chinese medicine Shensongyangxin capsule on treating premature ventricular contractions: a randomized, double-blind, controlled multicenter trial, Chin Med J 2011;124(1):76-83
6) Zhang Yachen, Chen Ruiming, Lu Baojing, Zhao Meihua, Rong Yezhi; Influence of Shengmai Capsule(生脉胶囊) on Recovery of Living Capacity in Patients after Myocardial Infarction[J]; Chinese Journal of Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine,2009-05
7) Wang Dongmei, Shi Bei, Zhao Ranzun, Xu Guanxue, Effect of Diao Xinxuekang soft capsules on heat function and serum apoptotic cytokines in patients with acute myocardial infarction after PCI, Shandong Medical Journal, 2011-05
8 ) Chen Hong,Zhu Kunpeng,Zhang Zhen,Yu Lei,Kang Yi,Liu Xin, Protection and mechanism of Di′ao Xinxue Kang against myocardial ischemia-reperfusion injury in rats[J];Chinese Traditional and Herbal Drugs;2010-12
9) Jia Y, Chen C, Ng CS, Leung SW. Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials on the Efficacy of Di’ao Xinxuekang Capsule and Isosorbide Dinitrate in Treating Angina Pectoris. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2012;2012:904147. doi:10.1155/2012/904147. Epub 2012 Feb 5. PubMed PMID: 22474528; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3310218.
10) Zhao Meihua; Rong Yezhi; Lu Baojing; et al; Effect of Shengmaisan on Serum Lipid Peroxidation in Acute Viral Myocarditis[J]; Chinese Journal of Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine;1996-03
Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine
Can Benefit Those in Cancer Rehabilitation
Most cancer patients in early stages are treated with surgery, chemotherapy or radiation therapy, helping to eliminate or control the cancer. Cancer rehabilitation has typical complications.
Some patients with cancer are unable to complete their treatments due to side effects such as fatigue, shortness of breath, heart palpitations, poor appetite, vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, poor sleep, night sweats, general weakness, hair loss, and bone marrow suppression partially caused by a reduction of white blood cells, red blood cells or blood platelets. Because of the pain associated with both the cancer and these treatments, another common outcome for those suffering with the disease is drug addiction from pain medication. Regularly patients also undergo emotional problems such as stress, anxiety, depression, insomnia, and angry moods, which can affect their quality of life.
Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine are commonly used in cancer rehabilitation in China. Acupuncture was used in clinical evaluation of these side effects of chemotherapy. In a U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) Consensus: “There is clear evidence that needle acupuncture treatment is effective for postoperative and chemotherapy nausea and vomiting, nausea of pregnancy, and postoperative dental pain.” (-NIH November 5, 1997)
Acupuncture, Traditional Chinese Medicine and food therapy can help with many of the difficulties that patients struggling with cancer may undergo. These modalities ease the side effects of chemo/radiotherapy, and can help to balance blood chemistry. Strengthening the body may also allow the patient to finish the chemo/radiotherapy, as well as help to relieve both pain and nausea, and even improve emotional problems to restart a normal life.
Dr. Yang has been teaching Oncology of Traditional Chinese Medicine at colleges of Oriental Medicine for a number of years, and has years of clinical experience treating oncology diseases.
Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs
Treat Menopausal Symptoms-Hot Flashes
Menopausal symptoms include hot flashes, a red face in the afternoon, night sweats, insomnia, heart palpitations, PMS, headache, vaginal atrophy, and vaginal dryness. Other symptoms that might relate to menopause include mood changes, nervousness, stress, anxiety, irritability, poor memory, incontinence, lowered libido, fatigue, weight gain, and pain.
Currently, hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is the principal and most commonly utilized treatment for menopause. Hormonal replacement therapy helps many women with the symptoms of menopause. However, recent studies have found that there may be increased risk of heart disease, cancer, and uterine bleeding or other health problems when women receive hormone replacement therapy over a longer period of time. Even with these risks, the desired results are not guaranteed – some women have taken hormone replacement therapy for years without substantial improvement of the symptoms. Under these conditions, hormone replacement therapies are not beneficial, and could cause negative side effects. Fortunately, women in the United States have access to acupuncture and Chinese medicine treatment options that control menopausal symptoms, without the negative side effects.
Acupuncture and Chinese medicine have been used to treat menopausal symptoms for thousands of years. Commonly used individual herbs include Dang Gui (Angelica), Shan Yao (Chinese yam), Sheng Di Huang (Rehmannia), Bai Shao Yao (Paeonia), and Huang Bai (Phellodendron), among others. They are often used for menopause, irregular periods, hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia, and infertility in Chinese medicine. There are also many effective formulas for menopausal symptoms, including Liu Wei Di Huang Wan, Dang Gui Liu Huang Wan, and Xiao Yao San.
These formulas were devised two thousand years ago and are still used today. Well-defined acupuncture protocols have also been developed during both the remote and recent history of Chinese medicine, and are used in combination with Chinese herbs to relieve menopausal symptoms, including hot flashes. In addition to traditional acupuncture protocols, new techniques such as electric-acupuncture and auricular acupuncture are often employed for different conditions, and have proven effective for menopausal symptoms.
Today, most Chinese women who have menopausal symptoms first seek help from acupuncture and Chinese medicine. Since the 1960’s, clinical research in China has shown extremely positive results that acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine together are effective treatments for menopausal symptoms. Clinical researchers have reported that many women who are undergoing hormone replacement therapy for menopausal symptoms – even if they have undergone the treatment for a longer period of time – can stop hormone replacement therapy with the help of acupuncture and Chinese medicine, and see improvement in their symptoms. Current studies on acupuncture treatment of menopausal symptoms in the United States and Europe also show extremely positive results.
Generally, most women with menopausal symptoms who benefit from acupuncture and Chinese medicine first see improvements in emotional problems after two to three treatments. Subsequently, hot flashes and night sweats could be reduced after five to six treatments. Ultimately, the majority of symptoms improve after ten to twelve treatments. Women who used hormone replacement therapy were able to decrease the dosage after five to six treatments, accompanied with improved relief of hot flashes and night sweats, and were able to stop hormone therapy entirely after about ten treatments, coinciding with the disappearance of hot flashes. In general, a few more sessions of treatment are necessary after the reduction of menopausal symptoms in order to maintain lasting results.
Dr. Yang has treated menopausal symptoms for years using acupuncture and Chinese herbal formals. He has treated women on hormone replacement therapy, including patients who had undergone HRT for over ten years without the termination of obvious menopausal symptom like hot flashes, night sweats, poor sleep, and emotional problems. These conditions were improved, or symptoms were relieved, by using special techniques such as electric-acupuncture, auricular acupuncture and a combination of specific Chinese herbal formulas according to different conditions.
Infertility & IVF
While female infertility most obviously can prevent a woman from becoming pregnant, if a woman with similar underlying difficulties does manage to become pregnant, it will often be difficult to take the pregnancy successfully to term, as these underlying difficulties may lead to miscarriage. The goal for treating female infertility is not only to enhance the ability to become pregnant in the first place, but also to prevent miscarriages and to deliver a healthy baby.
Acupuncture and Chinese medicine have been used to treat infertility and prevent miscarriages for about two thousand five hundred years in China. Thousands of years of clinical practice and empirical evidence built from innumerable cases has allowed Chinese medical physicians to determine that using needles to stimulate certain specific points on the meridians of the body can help treat infertility.
Some of these points are SP6 (it is on the spleen meridian, on the medial side of the lower leg, superior to the prominence of the medial malleolus) and REN 3, 4, 6 (they are on the conception meridian, on the midline of the lower abdomen and between umbilicus and the pubic symphysis).
There are many classical Chinese herbal formulas devised by Chinese medical physicians that have, throughout history, been successful in treating infertility and preventing miscarriages. Wu Zi Yan Zong Wan (which means: “pills of five seeds to bring forth offspring”) is a classic herbal formula to treat infertility. Shou Tai Wan (which means: “Fetus Longevity Pill”) is commonly used to treat miscarriage and/or pre-miscarriage with lower back pain, abdomen pain and uterine bleeding during pregnancy. Today, these formulas are still recommended remedies by Chinese medicine doctors and Western medical physicians in China to help infertility and miscarriage.
In China since the 1980’s, there have been numerous studies that have shown the marked advantages of acupuncture and Chinese medicine in combination with Western medicine to treat infertility due to factors like anovulation, luteal phase defect, follicular maldevelopment, inadequacy of the corpus luteum function, obstruction of the fallopian tube(s), immune infertility, among others. Below are examples of studies that stand as evidence for the effectiveness of Chinese medicine for treating infertility due to a variety of causes.
It was first reported in 1981 that acupuncture is effective in the promotion of ovulation and success in becoming pregnant. Of the 50 women with anovulation that received acupuncture treatment, 45 women successfully ovulated and 28 women got pregnant .
Another study done in 1984 showed, of the 24 women with anovulation that received acupuncture stimulation at point SP6, 18 women successful ovulated and 16 became pregnant .
It was reported in 1991 that 60 cases of infertility due to luteal phase defect were treated with Chinese herbs. After the treatment, the hyperthermal phase score of basal body temperature (BBT) was noticeably augmented, the hyperthermal phase 7-8 days after ovulation was enhanced, the transitional period of BBT remarkably reduced, and the pregnancy rate in 32 uncomplicated cases of luteal phase defect was 56% .
In 72 cases of infertility caused by endometriosis, after treatment periods ranging from 3 to 9 menstrual cycles, there were 42 cases of pregnancy, or 58.33% of the studied group . For 20 cases of infertility due to tubal obstruction, acupuncture in combination with Chinese herbs showed results of 12 cases of pregnancy .
Remarkably, there are studies to support that Chinese herbals formulas can even benefit immune infertility. A Chinese classic formula Zhibai Dihuang Wan was used to treat infertile couples with antisperm and/or antizona pellucida antibodies in their blood serum; after the treatment the antibodies were changed to negatives in 81.3% of immune infertile couples. Eight women in one of the studies were successfully pregnant in 1-9 months after the antibodies’ negative conversion, and the negative status lasted throughout the course of pregnancy .
Practitioners in Europe and the United States also report that women who have had infertility issues, but were treated with acupuncture and Chinese medicine, successfully become pregnant. Acupuncture has also been shown to be able to improve the success rate of IVF treatment. It was reported that in Germany 160 women underwent IVF, in which 80 women received acupuncture and 80 women did not.
From current research, many studies such as those from the Obstetrics and Gynecology Hospital of Fudan University in Shanghai, China, and Weill Cornell Medical Center in New York, United States reveal that acupuncture and Chinese medicine benefits infertility. For example, acupuncture induces ovulation by positively affecting the hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian axis in the brain; normalizing hormone and endocrine systems; promoting the secretion of pituitary, follicle growth, FSH (Follicle-Stimulating Hormone) and LH (Luteal Hormal); which play key roles in fertility [8-14]. Relatedly, acupuncture has also been shown to enhance the blood supply of the uterus and ovaries, promoting blood flow to the endometrium [15-17].
Chinese herbal formulas have similar effects as outlined for acupuncture above. Chinese herbal formulas can affect the ovaries, follicles, and uterus as well. Chinese herbs can improve the development of the ovaries, quality of ovulation and cleavage capacity; increase ovary’s weight, stimulate the release of GnRH (Gonadotropin Releasing Hormone), and increase the total number of follicles. Chinese herbs can also encourage the development of the uterus, increase uterine weight, and increase thickness and the number of glands [18-20].
The normal menstrual cycle includes the follicular phase, ovulation phase, luteal phase and menstruation phase. Women with infertility often have an accompanying disorder and/or dysfunction of these phases. The best way to treat these conditions is by using different special herbal formulas, acupuncture protocols and techniques at different phases of the menstrual cycle depending on the conditions present. The timing of the phases is as follows: around the 4-13th days of the cycle is the follicular phase, meaning that promoting follicle development is important.
Around the 14th day of the cycle, the ovulation phase, inducing ovulation is needed; while around 16 – 28th days, the luteal phase occurs. It is necessary to promote the secretion of LH (luteinizing hormone); moreover, it is needed to lead bleeding in the menstruation phase. It is especially important that acupuncture treatment for menstrual cycle dysfunction be done once or twice per week for 3 to 6 months (or more).
However, it is necessary and important to use electric-acupuncture once a day for the consecutive three days before ovulation in order to inducing ovulation.
Additionally, though the treatment plan is similar to the above for acupuncture and Chinese medicine when working with women undergoing IVF treatments, there is a unique element consisting of one session of electric-acupuncture treatment given within 1 hour before the embryo transfer and 1 hour after implantation.
Women with a history of miscarriage may be more susceptible to infertility, and even after they become pregnant it is still easy to miscarriage. Helping them to become pregnant and preventing miscarriage is most important; therefore, a detailed treatment plan and schedule are necessary. Usually, the treatment with acupuncture and Chinese medicine is needed for three to six months before making a plan for pregnancy. Considering that most miscarriages occur within the first three months of pregnancy, once a woman becomes pregnant, she will still need treatments to prevent the miscarriage. This course of treatment may last twelve weeks or more depending on the timing of her last miscarriage.
Chinese medicine and acupuncture are also beneficial for women with pre-miscarriage problems. Common symptoms include lower back pain, abdominal pain, and uterine bleeding during pregnancy. The signs of effective treatment are the disappearance of the above symptoms within 3 days to 1 week. The immediate use of acupuncture and Chinese herbs are necessary afterwards.
Dr. Yang has treated many cases of female infertility in the China and United States over 30 years. He has successfully helped women with infertility to become pregnant and prevent miscarriage by using only acupuncture and Chinese herbal formulas. Dr. Yang has also been involved in helping women undergoing IVF treatment to successfully get pregnant and prevent miscarriage via applying acupuncture and Chinese herbal formulas.
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Zhao R. Acupuncture combination with Chinese herbs treatment for 20 cases of tubal obstruction infertility. Journal of Clinical Acupuncture (in Chinese), 2004, 20 (1): 22.
Li, D. J, et al. Treatment of immune infertility with Chinese medicinal herbs of ziyinjianghuo. Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine (in Chinese), 1995; 15(1):3
Paulus, W. E, et al. Influence of acupuncture on the pregnancy rate in patients who undergo assisted reproduction therapy. Fertil Steril, 2002; 77(4):721-4.
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Yu, J, et al. Relationship of hand temperature and blood ß-endorphin immunoreactive substance with electric -acupuncture induction of ovulation (in Chinese). Acupuncture Research (in Chinese), 1986; 11(2), 86-90,
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Sha, J. E, et al. Clinical study of 84 cases on Acupuncture treatment for infertility of premature ovarian failure. Journal of Clinical Acupuncture (in Chinese), 2000; 14 (6): 16.
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Goswamy, R.K, et al. Doppler ultrasound studies of the uterine atery in spontaneous ovarian cycles. Hum. Reprod., 1988; 3, 721-726.
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Stress, anxiety, depression, and obsessive or over-thinking are mental-emotional disorders that can be profoundly detrimental to the lives of many individuals who suffer from these conditions. These conditions are often accompanied by pain, insomnia, addiction, gastrointestinal disorders, sexual dysfunction, weight problems, fatigue, cancer, and many other diseases. They often affect the both the health and quality of life of the patient, to the point that these cognitive-emotional interruptions become so severe that some patients are no longer able to work, and lose even the ability to learn. These conditions affect not only the patient, but can be extremely unsettling to the lives and well-being of the patient’s family members as well.
Acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine have a history extending back more than two thousand years in China. According to traditional Chinese medicine, mental disorders due to emotional changes cause imbalance of the body.
The mind and body are bound up in a profound and constant relationship, and when this relationship is disrupted, both the body and mind suffer. When the body suffers, the mind suffers, and vice versa.When the mind suffers, or when the relationship between the mind and body is disrupted such that the mind is unable to function clearly and effectively, this is called a disorder of the Shen. Traditional Chinese medicine has accumulated a rich experience of treating mental disorders. Since 1970’s in China, many research projects have studied the treatment of mental disorders, especially with electro-acupuncture for the treatment of depression. Electro-acupuncture compares well with Western medicine modalities for treating depression.
The results of many of these studies show that electro-acupuncture is consistently capable of improving the condition of depression in patients. Unlike many Western medical treatments for depression, the patients do not experience any side effects from electro-acupuncture. Long-range follow up research with these patients concluded that there was no evidence of adverse side effects such as addiction, fatigue, poor sleeping or over sleeping, poor memory, or unwanted emotional changes.
Over the course of more than twenty years of clinical experience and research, Dr. Yang has developed protocols using acupuncture/electro-acupuncture for mental disorders like stress, anxiety, depression, and obsessive thinking. These protocols have become known to students in schools of Oriental medicine as Dr. Yang “Shen” treatment. Originally developed and shown to be effective in China, and with continued proven effectiveness in the U.S., these protocols give patients significant relief from their symptoms of mental-emotional disturbance and disorder. These protocols have the potential to be effective in cases where other therapeutic modalities are not possible, or have been tried without successful results. The majority of patients who are treated with the “Shen” protocols experience improvement in their mental-emotional state, and diminished symptoms from their disorder.
Secondary symptoms of these mental-emotional disorders tend to be positively affected as well, including pain, addiction, sexual dysfunction, gastrointestinal disorders, and weight problems. Follow up with patients demonstrates that they have not developed an “addiction” to acupuncture after stopping treatments. Treatment with these protocols tends to be cumulative, such that progressively more effective treatments and positive outcomes can be expected as the series of treatment continues over time. Generally, most patients are initially able sleep for a few minutes during treating periods in the clinic. After the first acupuncture session patients tend to be more capable of relaxing. After three to four acupuncture sessions, patients find their stress and anxiety decreased, and after five to six acupuncture sessions both depression and insomnia improve.
Though many patients can see results within this relatively short time-frame, certain chronic and entrenched cases may require longer terms of treatment, but are still likely to see worthwhile results after a treatment period of a year or more. For example, Dr. Yang has treated a patient who had suffered with severe mental disorders for nearly thirty years. This patient was able to achieve highly effective and positive results by staying with the treatment protocols for two and a half years. Another patient who had suffered for ten years with stress, and a related burning pain of the lower abdomen, experienced significant improvement in both conditions after completing a one-year plan of treatment. Many patients who have undergone these acupuncture and electro-acupuncture protocols for stress, anxiety, depression, and obsessive thinking have not experienced a recurrence of their symptoms, and have been able to discontinue medications for these same conditions.
The Shen treatment protocols for mental disorders make use of acupuncture, electro-acupuncture, and Chinese-style exercises prescribed by Dr. Yang. An example of these exercises – and one that patients can practice anywhere from home, office, or outside – is outlined by the following steps. 1) Stand with the feet apart, body relaxed, and the mind quieted; regulate the breathing to be even. 2) Slowly lift both arms up in front of the head with palms up. 3) Slowly push arms down with palms turned down and knees bent, and lower the upper body. 4) Then slowly lift arms up with palms turned up and straighten the upper body. 5) Return to step 2. 6) Follow the above process to regulate breathing, exhale while slowly lifting the arms up in front of head, and inhale while slowly pushing palms down. 7) Repeat these steps continuously for about 5 minutes.
Reducing Your Dependence on Western Pharmaceutical Drugs through
Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine
Dependence on Western pharmaceuticals is a very common problem in the United States. Many patients with chronic diseases often have a multitude of concurrent health problems. Some of the more common ones are: pain, stress, anxiety, depression, anger, worry, poor sleep, fatigue, emotional problems, neurological disorders, digestive disorders accompanied by allergies, and cardiovascular disorders linked with hormonal imbalances. Patients with constellations of these disorders have often spent a great deal of time and money seeking treatment from biomedical physicians, undergone many rounds of tests and lab work, and have generally been put on western medications for years at a time, even over whole lifetimes, which has in many cases caused marked dependence on these Western pharmaceuticals.
Patients who have seen less than satisfactory results in either their symptoms or their lab test results are, reasonably, continuously looking for newer and more effective medications and treatments. Many patients who have been prescribed such a large number of pharmaceuticals over a number of years are understandably upset about the situation they find themselves in, but have difficulty stopping or reducing their dependence on these medications. However, acupuncture and Chinese medicine can provide a powerful alternative, one without the negative side effects. This approach is completely holistic and will not only benefit chronic diseases, but also reduce the need for Western pharmaceuticals. Since the 1950’s in China, we have treated diseases with a novel integrative approach to medicine that combines acupuncture, Chinese medicine and modern Western medicine. We have used acupuncture and Chinese medicine for reducing dependence on Western pharmaceutics, which has provided very effective clinical results, and enhanced the health and well-being of our patients.
After treatment with acupuncture and Chinese medicine, some patients with chronic diseases, including those who have taken medicines for a long time, have their conditions change, symptoms improve, and lab tests return to normal, to such a great extent that they can stop taking virtually all Western medications. Common conditions for which patients are able to stop taking Western pharmaceuticals after a course of acupuncture and Chinese medicine include pain, allergies, acid reflux, menopause, hypothyroidism, hormone replace therapy, stress, anxiety, and depression.
In some cases, it is not possible to stop taking all Western pharmaceuticals for particular conditions, but very often it is possible to significantly reduce the number of medications that a patient is on with the help of acupuncture and Chinese medicine. Often, patients who are being treated with acupuncture and Chinese medicine experience improvement in both their symptoms and the results of lab tests, such that they can significantly reduce their dependence on Western medications. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine can be very beneficial in treating pain – this is particularly noteworthy, because pain tends to exacerbate the experience of emotional disturbances like stress, anxiety, depression, anger, worry, poor sleep, and fatigue.
By treating the pain, and reducing the medications that are prescribed to manage it, these other emotional symptoms can likewise be positively affected. In a similar way, digestive disorders are often correlated with allergies, and cardiovascular disorders are often associated with hormonal imbalances and neurological problems – by treating one aspect of the imbalance with acupuncture and Chinese medicine, the associated disorders are positively impacted.
As noted previously, for patients who are prescribed medications with significant side effects, they often find themselves seeking or being prescribed other medications to control the new symptoms and health problems that arise as an effect of the original medications. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine can be used to control these side effects, or even to substitute for Western medicines in some cases to reduce side effects, in order to help patients continue what may be necessary courses of Western biomedical treatment.
There are many cases in which patients suffering from certain diseases do see positive results from Western medical treatments, but have difficulty continuing treatments because of the powerful side effects. For diseases like Parkinson’s syndrome, and the well-known detrimental effects of chemo-therapy or radiotherapy for cancer, acupuncture and Chinese medicine can help to ease the side effects of medications, allowing the course of treatment to continue.
When using acupuncture and Chinese medicine to reduce dependence on Western medications, this reduction should be performed step by step in order to prevent withdrawal syndromes that can be induced by abruptly stopping these pharmaceutical treatments. Extensive clinical research and experience – ongoing in China, the United States, and Europe – powerfully suggests that there are no negative side effects, and no dependence, from the use of acupuncture and Chinese medicine.
TCM for Hormonal Imbalance
Hormonal imbalance affects the health and quality of life of many people. It is not uncommon for many, if not most, people to experience some difficulties with hormonal imbalance throughout life. Hormonal imbalance is not a problem isolated to women, as both men and women commonly experience hormonal imbalances. The signs and symptoms may vary, but hormonal imbalances may occur at any age.
Common signs and symptoms of hormonal imbalance may include fatigue, craving for sweets or carbohydrates, weight gain or weight loss, puffiness or edema, hot or cold flashes, night sweats, feeling depressed or overwhelmed, mood swings or irritability, insomnia or restless sleep, headache, vertigo, fuzzy thinking, digestive issues, joint pain and stiffness, anxiety, depression, heart palpitation, breast pain, urinary dysfunction, hair loss, dry skin, PMS, irregular periods, ovarian failure, uterine bleeding, vaginal dryness or vaginal discharge, fibroids, low libido, sexual dysfunction, impotence, prostate problems, infertility.
It is possible that people with these symptoms will not show hormonal imbalances in standard blood tests. This does not necessarily mean that these people have normally balanced hormone levels. Clinical observation has shown that these people may still have a potential for hormonal imbalance, and without proper diagnosis and treatment these people are at risk of developing “real hormonal balance problems”.
Hormonal replacement therapy is a very common treatment, and helps many patients with aspects of the above signs and symptoms of hormonal imbalance. Unfortunately, these therapies are not without possible side effects, and may have to be used long-term to remain effective. Because of the powerful action of hormones in the body, there is a wide array of side effects that may take place. These side effects may vary depending on the particular hormonal treatment used. Common problems of side effects due to hormonal replacement treatment include: hot flashes, bone and joint problems, uterine bleeding, and vaginal dryness and discharge.
Acupuncture and Chinese herbs have a long history of treating the signs and symptoms of “hormonal imbalance”. For treatment of the above signs and symptoms, a physician trained in Traditional Chinese Medicine can make use of single herbs such as Dang Gui (Angelica), Shan Yao (Chinese yam), Rou Gui (Cinnamon) and Gou Qi (Chinese wolfberry). Even lay-people in China are familiar with Dang Gui (Angelica) as a common herbal treatment for irregular periods, PMS, infertility and menopause. In addition to single herbs, there are many effective formulas to treat patients presenting with signs and symptoms of hormonal imbalance. For example Jin Gui Shen Qi Wan (Kidney Qi Pill from the Golden Cabinet) was made two thousand five hundred yeas ago and is still used today. Well-defined acupuncture protocols have also been developed throughout the history of Chinese medicine to address hormonal imbalance, and are regularly used in association with herbal treatments.
Chinese herbs and acupuncture have stood the “test of time”, and are proven to be safe and effective for “hormonal imbalance”. In clinical observation, herbal formulas are more effective then single herbs. The herbal formulas for “hormonal imbalance” are made for the specific needs of each patient and modified as needed, as having a correct clinical diagnosis is vital for ensuring that the best formula for your individual needs is selected.
Common thyroid disorders include hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism, thyroiditis, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, subacute thyroiditis, chronic lymphocytic thyroiditis, and goiter.
Hypothyroidism is a very common chronic health problem for women in the United States. Thyroid disorders often cause a cluster of health problems simultaneously, and often interfere with the autoimmune, cardiovascular, reproductive, digestive, and musculoskeletal systems. The effects on these systems can be accompanied by stress, anxiety, depression, and other emotional problems.
Thyroid disorders come from not only an overproduction (hyperthyroidism) but also underproduction (hypothyroidism) of thyroid hormones as indicated by clinical symptoms, lab tests, and pathology. Hyperthyroidism is commonly treated with anti-thyroid medication, and hypothyroidism is commonly treated with hormone replacement therapy, though surgery is a possibility for both conditions in some cases.
Anti-thyroid therapy for hyperthyroidism can potentially be a long-term therapy, lasting at least 2 to 3 years, and in some patients symptoms can return even after conditions seem to have improved, and therapeutic interventions have stopped. Anti-thyroid medications can easily cause digestive problems such as nausea at the onset of using the medicine. Other potential side effects include allergies, severe injuries to the liver, lowered white blood cell counts, and overall diminished immune function after long term use. Additionally, anti-thyroid or surgical therapy for hyperthyroidism can easily cause hypothyroidism in some patients, especially for patients with thyroiditis and subacute thyroiditis.
Hormone replacement therapy for hypothyroidism can prove to be a long-term, even life-long, therapy, which can easily cause side effects. Most patients who undergo this therapy may go years without notable relief from their symptoms, with lab tests showing only partial, even minuscule, improvement in their condition.
Acupuncture and Chinese medicine have been traditionally and successfully employed in China to treat thyroid disorders, with substantial evidence of their effectiveness. These modalities have been used to treat goiter for over 1,500 years, hyperthyroidism since the 1930’s, and hypothyroidism since the 1960’s. The combination of acupuncture and Chinese medicine with Western medicine has been used for thyroid disorders since 1970’s. The research taken from a number of clinical studies suggests that acupuncture and Chinese medicine can be a part of very effective treatments for both hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism.
Clinical research conducted in China on the combination of acupuncture and Chinese medicine with Western medicine for hyperthyroidism concluded that treatments of hyperthyroidism with acupuncture and Chinese medicine have been successful, though the course of treatment provides for a relatively slower process when compared to Western treatment. However, the results gained by the utilization of acupuncture and Chinese medicine do not lose their effectiveness, and have no recurring symptoms, after stopping treatment. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine have few, if any, side effects, and can even reduce the occurrence of side effects of Western medicines. These therapies have been shown to be effective and successful for patients who have thyroiditis, subacute thyroiditis and hypothyroidism caused by over use of anti-thyroid medicines.
Similar clinical research in China on hypothyroidism reported that treatments of hypothyroidism with acupuncture and Chinese medicine compare favorably with Western treatments, showing more long-term positive outcomes, and usually showing benefits within a matter of months for most patients. In our clinical experience, the patient generally experiences symptom relief first, followed by improvements on lab results after four to six months. As with all acupuncture and Chinese medicine treatments, there are few, if any, side effects, and these therapies can help to reduce the occurrence of the side effects from Western medicines. After successfully undergoing acupuncture and Chinese medicine treatments for hypothyroidism, there does not tend to be any recurrence of symptoms once the treatments are stopped. Finally, after successful treatment with acupuncture and Chinese medicine and a subsequent change in their condition, most patients who have taken hypothyroid medications long-term can stop taking them, without seeing a return of symptoms or signs of problems in lab test results.
-Traditional Chinese Medicine can help endometriosis
Endometriosis often occurs in women from thirty to forty years old. The main symptoms are dysmenorrhoea (painful
menstruation) and non-menstruation pain. Pain regularly occurs in the lower abdomen and lumbosacral region, and may spread
to the vagina, perineum, anus, and pelvis. Some patients may also experience painful sexual intercourse. Some patients have the
experience of sudden abdominal pain during menstruation, accompanied by a pale or purple color in the face, cold limbs,
sweating of body, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or constipation, and fatigue, among other symptoms. Endometriosis commonly
accompanies menstrual abnormalities, manifesting as a short cycle of menstruation, or cycle delay, along with a possibly
increased or decreased volume of menses. Most patients exhibit mental and emotional changes due to long term cyclical
dysmenorrhea, and may feel fear, stress, anxiety, depression, restlessness, irritability, insomnia and other emotional problems
that relate to menstruation. Endometriosis can be a cause of infertility, and about 30-50% of endometriosis patients are also
likely to suffer from infertility.
Endometriosis most commonly manifests as dysmenorrhoea (painful menstruation) and non-menstrual abdominal pain.
Therefore, the goal of treatment of endometriosis is to both of relieve and prevent pain, eliminate the causes of endometriosis,
and normalize menstrual abnormalities to reduce and prevent the recurrence of endometriosis pain.
Hormone therapy and surgery are commonly used in Western medicine as treatments for endometriosis. Hormone therapy is
effective for most women, but after long term use it can often cause side effects such as amenorrhea and menopausal syndrome
in many patients, which then brings its own set of new health problems. Hormonal therapy isn’t a permanent fix for
endometriosis, and it is possible to have a recurrence of symptoms after stopping use. Likewise, patients undergoing surgical
therapy have a high likelihood of experiencing a recurrence of endometriosis symptoms, and this kind of surgery has a high risk of
leading to infertility.
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) that includes acupuncture and Chinese herbal formulas in the treatment of endometriosis
was reported in 1960s, but Chinese medicine has a long history for treatment of dysmenorrhoea, which can include pain from
endometriosis. Clinical research has shown that acupuncture and Chinese herbal formulas can relieve endometriosis pain and
regularize menstrual abnormalities of endometriosis. These positive results usually remain longer than treatments via other
modalities, even after a course of treatment has been terminated, and there are no side effects. Acupuncture and Chinese herbal
formulas also have the ability to simultaneously improve other conditions related to endometriosis that the patient may suffer
from, including the potential to reverse infertility.
TCM is also used to control or reduce the side effects of hormone therapy in Western medicine for treatment of endometriosis.
By way of a clinical example, a 34 year old patient was diagnosed with pain from endometriosis, and began taking hormone
therapy. This therapy caused amenorrhea – in her case a complete stopping of menstruation. However, for two years she would
undergo regular abdominal cramping over a period of two to three days once a month. After three months of treatment with
acupuncture and Chinese herbal formulas, not only was her abdominal pain relieved, but she also restarted regular menstruation
without pain. She was able, ultimately, to end her hormone therapy.
TCM treatment of endometriosis pain often employs two protocols at different stages (or conditions) of menstruation. The first
protocol is to relieve pain of endometriosis during menstruation, usually used during the three days before the onset of
menstruation until menstrual pain is reduced or disappears. The second protocol is to eliminate the cause of the endometriosis
and prevent the pain recurrence, which is commonly used before or after menstruation. As another clinical example, a 38 year
old patient reported regular abdominal pain during the first hour of menstruation, and was diagnosed with endometriosis. It was
necessary for her to visit the ER for injections of pain medication. By way of treatment, we used the two protocols above, for pain
reduction and pain prevention, for her symptoms. The patient reported that she did not need to visit the ER again after 4 weeks
of treatment with the above protocols. Her pain reduced following continued treatments until the pain disappeared after about
eight months of treatment. Many other patients have also benefited from the clinical application of these two protocols.
Acupuncture is usually used to quickly relieve severe pain of endometriosis during menstruation. Our clinical observation finds
that acupuncture is regularly effective immediately within five to fifteen minutes in the treatment of dysmenorrhea pain,
including pain from endometriosis. As a final example, a 28 year old patient presented with lower abdominal pain that had been
part of her menstruation for the last 15 years, since she turned 13 years old. She has had severe pain in her lower abdomen
during menstruation, a pain that often spreads to her lower back, and can be accompanied by headache, migraine, nausea, etc.,
to the point that she is often unable to go to work during menstruation. This menstrual pain was able to be relieved with each
acupuncture treatment, including ear acupuncture, all within ten to fifteen minutes.