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A Chinese Medical Reference: Symptoms, Patterns, Diseases, Acupoints, Medicinals, and Formulas eBook
The English-language literature of Chinese medicine lacks reference materials. Since the very first acupuncture programs decades ago, students have compiled lists of textbook items they need to memorize. Students today still make lists, a somewhat surprising fact in a digital age. A Chinese Medical Reference: Symptoms, Patterns, Diseases, Acupoints, Medicinals, and Formulas is a complete set of lists designed to save all the work. This comprehensive reference work is compiled to the highest professional standards from original Chinese sources, and its digital format ensures easy searchability and maximum affordability.
As the title suggests, A Chinese Medical Reference: Symptoms, Patterns, Diseases, Acupoints, Medicinals, and Formulas presents the key Chinese concepts thematically in six sections, with each concept forming an entry. It presents 320+ symptoms, 130+ patterns, 130+ diseases, 400+ acupoints, 570+ medicinals, and 260+ medicinal formulas. With a total of 1,800 entries, it covers a comprehensive range of concepts, including the most-tested and commonly used, plus all the most-searched items in a course of study.
Throughout, Chinese terms are given in simplified and complex characters, so that they can be found by anyone who knows Chinese. Pinyin is given in accented and unaccented form, so that users can search whether they know the tones or have a system capable of entering tone marks. General terms can be searched by English, acupoints by alphanumeric codes, and medicinals by English and Latin pharmacognostic names.
The material has been drawn from other works. Symptoms, patterns, and diseases come from Chinese Medicine: Theories of Modern Practice, while acupoints, medicinals, and formulas have been extracted from our databases. Those works have all been compiled from Chinese sources, ensuring that students receive information of the same scope and quality as taught in China’s professional medical colleges.
A major problem for students is terminological inconsistencies between English-language authors. One and same concept may be represented by one term in one author and by a different term in another. Even more confusing, one and same term may refer to different concepts depending on the author. A Chinese Medical Reference: Symptoms, Patterns, Diseases, Acupoints, Medicinals, and Formulas avoids this problem with rigorous consistency. Each concept is referred to by a single English term that closely mirrors the Chinese original. Wherever that concept appears, it is always referred to by the same name.
When a concept is referred to by a single term every time it is used, students can develop their understanding of the concept by seeing how it used in different contexts. The digital format, so much more practical than the indexes contained in paper books, allows readers to search through a whole text, find each context, thereby enhancing their understanding. Since the digital versions of other works by Wiseman and his colleagues all use the same terminology, searches can be performed over a wide range of literature, including:
It is difficult to emphasize enough how digital information revolutionizes the learning process. Digital searches are far more efficient than look-ups from index entries. Instead of poring over isolated text, students can trace concepts throughout the text they are reading and beyond. Instead of making hand-written notes and indelible color marks on a paper copy, e-books give readers the ability to make editable bookmarks and highlights to personalize their information according to their changing needs. This reduces the need for passive memorization by rote and makes learning an active process of constant investigation.
Symptoms: The symptoms section starts with general conditions and then presents localized conditions from head to toe. This arrangement has the advantage of enhancing the traditional four examinations scheme, whereby certain symptoms of specific loci may appear in more than one of four places. Thus, all urinary symptoms are placed together, as are stool symptoms, even though they might normally be divided among the inspection, listening and smelling, and inquiry examinations in diagnostic textbooks. Each symptom is described in such as a way as to enable students to easily identify it and differentiate it from others. Indication of the patterns or diseases in which each symptom can appear further offers students avenues for further searches to develop their knowledge.
Patterns: The patterns section lists the patterns included in modern Chinese-language diagnostic textbooks. The information provided includes main names, alternate names, key signs, full description, related diseases, pathogenesis, analysis of signs, treatments, combined patterns, and further developments. The content of this section is drawn from Chinese Medicine: Theories of Modern Practice.
Diseases: The diseases section includes many conditions that, though scantily discussed in English language textbooks, are commonly seen in Chinese-language basic theory texts. All 130 commonly presented diseases are included.
Acupoints: The acupoints section includes all 365 channel points, as well a selection of commonly used non-channel points. The information provided for each acupoint includes location (as given in modern textbooks), classical location (as given in premodern literature), local anatomy, actions, indications, stimulus applied, and point categories
Medicinals: The medicinals section includes a broader range of agents than Western students are normally required to master. Items are arranged according to their actions, as in textbooks. The information provided for each item includes Chinese alternate names, properties (nature and flavor), actions and indications, dosage and method of administration, product quality, and production area. Note that the same information can be found in Comprehensive Chinese Materia Medica (Paradigm Publications, 2023), which contains over 6,000 medicinals in alphabetical order.
Formulas: The formulas section is arranged according to actions, as in textbooks. The information for each item includes ingredients, method of preparation, actions, indications, formula rationale (explaining what each ingredient does), and variations. Since individual ingredients can be found in the medicinals section, and the indications can be found in the symptoms, patterns, and diseases sections, students have a vast amount of information at their fingertips in one e-book.
Chinese-English Dictionary of Chinese Medicine eBook
Containing over 33,000 terms, the Chinese-English Dictionary of Chinese Medicine is the largest, fully searchable list of Chinese medical terms ever published. It is the only sufficiently comprehensive list of Chinese medical terms to be an ultimate go-to for any translator, student, or clinician. It contains a vast array of general terms, including the 5,000 or more of Practical Dictionary of Chinese Medicine (Paradigm Publications, 1997). It also contains the 1,500 standard and alternate acupoint names from Grasping the Wind (Paradigm Publications, 1989) and over 10,000 standard and alternate names of medicinals described in the Comprehensive Chinese Materia Medica (Paradigm Publications, coming in 2023) derived from the Zhōng Yào Dà Cí Diǎn.
The present e-book version offers maximum searchability without the need of indexes. Chinese terms are given in simplified and complex characters, so that they can be found by anyone who knows Chinese. Pinyin is given in accented and unaccented form, so that users can search by it whether they know the tones or have a system capable of entering tone marks. General terms can be searched by English, acupoints by alphanumeric codes, and medicinals can be searched by English and Latin pharmacognostic names.
To make for the greatest utility without overly burdening the text, a standard set of graphical indicators are used throughout this and other related e-books. Square brackets ([ ]) indicate elements of terms that can be omitted (such as omissible elements of medicinal names) or notes to Chinese and English terms. A double asterisk (⁑) indicates polysemous medicinal names. A gray sidebar in the left-hand margin indicates a commonly used item.
This dictionary has a history of over thirty years of continual expansion and refinement. It began with a database created while writing Fundamentals of Chinese Medicine (Paradigm Publications, 1985). It was published in the form of Glossary of Chinese Medical Terms (Paradigm Publications in 1990). It was expanded and republished in the form of the English-Chinese, Chinese-English Dictionary of Chinese Medicine (Hunan Science and Technology Press, 1995). And in 2014, after further expansion, it was made available as the Online TCM Dictionary on Paradigm Publications’ website.
These decades of development and publication have given the terms here presented the benefit of other scholars’ contributions, as well as the refinements inspired by public critique. Chinese-English Dictionary of Chinese Medicine is an invaluable asset for translators and teachers engaged in compiling or presenting information from primary sources. As a bilingual term list, it has met the critical test of actual translations of the classical Chinese medical texts, the Shāng Hán Lùn (Paradigm Publications, 1999) and Jīn Guì Yào Lüè (Paradigm Publications, 2013) Chinese Medicine: Theories of Modern Practice (Paradigm Publications, 2022) shows this terminology to be up to the challenge of presenting the entire theoretical knowledge of professional Chinese medical education.
This e-book version offers translators suggestions for translation problems they come across in their work, without proprietary restrictions and at an extremely low cost. However, the notion that Chinese medicine does not possess a terminology that requires a corresponding terminology in English and other languages has not faded from the Western world. In view of this, the present work also includes an introduction explaining issues surrounding terminology and translation.
CHINESE MEDICINE: THEORIES OF MODERN PRACTICE
Chinese Medicine: Theories of Modern Practice describes the foundational doctrines, physiology, pathology, diagnostics, and therapeutics of Chinese medicine at the same breadth and depth as the basic-theory textbooks used in China. If you have ever thought that you would like to know what a Chinese professor would teach about a theory, pattern or clinical case this is the book for you.
Chinese Medicine: Theories of Modern Practice is the first two of three volumes for people who want to understand Chinese medicine from the Chinese viewpoint. It is also for anyone who requires practical professional information at the level of detail required in the professional courses taught in the People’s Republic of China.
CHINESE MEDICINE: THE IDEAS THAT SHAPED IT
Chinese Medicine: The Ideas that Shaped It is one of three volumes for people who want to understand Chinese medicine from the Chinese viewpoint. It is intended for those contemplating the study of acupuncture and Chinese medicine, students early in their career, or practitioners interested in the background not provided in their clinical education. It is also suitable for laypersons who want to understand more about Chinese medicine in its native culture. Although it is available separately, it provides excellent preparation for Chinese Medicine: Theories of Modern Practice for students who require practical professional information at the level of detail required in the professional courses taught in the People’s Republic of China.
Nigel Wiseman, PhD., School of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Chang Gung University
Click here to read Source-Oriented Transmission of Chinese Medicine