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Illness Treatment Through TCM

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Causes of illness :

In ancient times the causes of illness were divided into three classes, namely “internal”, “external” and “non-endo-non-exogenous ” causes.
1.Internal causes :This denotes certain pathogenic factors which arise inside the human body and cause illness, chiefly the condition of rise and fall of a person’s healthiness as is implied in the common saying that “If healthiness exists inside, evils cannot offend.”(Whatever is harmful to the human body is called in traditional Chinese medicine by the generalizing term evil,that is pathogen)  The term healthiness comprises in its meaning both the physical constitution, the mental state and resistance to illness.
2.External causesThis denotes the fact of being affected by certain pathogenic factors in the external world (i.e. nature).  Traditional Chinese medical scholars call these pathogenic factors by the term external evils as well.  Traditional Chinese medicine borrowed the names of natural phenomena, such as wind, cold, summer, damp, dry, hot (fire) and their characteristics to generalize the causes of all diseases resulting from interference in the human body by external factors and also for use in the description of causes and symptoms of various diseases, as shown below:
Windfor showing that the symptom of a disease is migratory in its place of occurrence and changeable in form, like wind.
Coldfor describing symptoms of deterioration of a function, e.g. running a fever, having a painful joint, or having abdominal pain or diarrhea.
Fire (s): for describing symptoms which are manifestations of hyperfunctioning of some organ(s) in the process of pathological variations and may be further divided into two categories, i.e. substantial fires and deficiency fires.
Substantial fires
are due mostly to rampancy of disease evils and in the majority of cases are manifested as high fevers, heavy sweating, and propensity to fly into a temper.  Deficiency fires are due mostly to deficits in body fluid and are found principally in chronic wasting diseases, manifesting themselves in the majority of cases as feeling  worried unnecessarily and lying in bed sleepless, or having seminal emissions at night, often with dreams.
Damp   for describing obstacles to the performance of the function of transport and transformation of food in the body, often seen as joint pain, muscular pain, poor appetite or a sensation of suppression in the chest.
Dry    for indicating a person being affected by dryness and suffering loss of salivary fluid  in such a way that this loss is transformed into heat and fire. The symptoms are seen in the majority of cases as red eyes, swollen gums, sore throat or dry coughs.
3. non-endo-non-exogenous cause:
This term denotes a category of illness the causes of which are obvious by themselves consisting chiefly in hunger or surfeit, the person’s house or room being not sanitary, an injury or wound resulting from a fall or from a beating, or having been bitten by an insect or an animal.

 Endogenous evils( pathogen):

This term denotes pathogenic factors, such as phlegm stasis and blood stasis in the body, posterior or secondary to some disease.
1. Phlegm: This term denotes the pathological product secreted by the respiratory tract and includes in its scope the mucous substances accumulated in the tissues of certain organs which have undergone pathological changes. Such mucous substances, which are transformed from salivary fluid, impede the normal process of air formation in and passage through the viscera and hollow organs.
2. Blood stasis:  This term denotes the symptom of blood becoming stagnant in flow and staying at a certain place in the body, which will lead to some substantial injury done to a part of the network of passages or to the function performance of certain viscera. It may combine with other evils (e.g. cold and phlegm) to give more obstinate pathological manifestations.
3. Toxicity: According to the theory of traditional Chinese medicine, toxicity falls into a number of types, which are, for example:
a. Internal toxicity: This term denotes noxious heat which seeps from inside.
b. Noxious dampness: This term refers to the fact that dampness may turn into toxicity after being pent up in the body for a long time.
c. Damp heat: This term is used to mean that owing to the fact that the spleen of the human body may not be healthy enough to transport well, dampness arises inside or, as a result of the body staying at a damp place for too long, external evils invade into it and, having been pent up and lying dormant in it for quite a time, produce heat..  The treatment should center on reducing fever and facilitating increase of moisture.  The concrete therapeutic method to be adopted varies with the place of the body where the affliction occurs.
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