About Me

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Diamond Bar, California, United States
I am currently an acupuncturist in my own clinc and a holder of diplomas of Oriental Medical Doctor and Chinese Herbology (NCCAOM). I got my B.S. of Chinese Materia Medica, M.S. of Medicine, Ph.D. of Natural Product Medicine in China, then trained as a post-doctoral research scientist in Columbia University in New York. I was a professor of Liaoning University of Traditional Chinese Medicine in China, an AvH research fellow in Dusseldorf University in Germany, a professor in South California University of Health Science in the U.S., and the editor and author of the book: Traditional Herbal Medicine Research Methods-Identification, Analysis, Bioassay, and Pharmacological and Clinical Studies (In English, contracted with John Wiley & Sons, will be published in January 2011). I enjoy to spent time to explore all aspects related to health and illness and to be challenged with diseases or symptoms that allopathic and other doctors failed to treat or relieve. I like to combine the knowledge of traditional and modern medicine in the treatment. Please drag down for the content!

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Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Improvment of kidney function with acupuncture and herbal formula

On 12/15, I wrote about treatment for Paul's dizziness and hand numbness, and mentioned at the end that the treatment was continued for his kidney problem. This morning, he came to my clinic with the blood test result tested on 12/20/2010. The result showed that his kidney function has been significantly imporved. The following was the data comparison of the test result with the previous ones.

 Test date                    Creatinine                                   GFR
                           (normal range: 0.7-1.3)          (normal range: 90-120)
01/27/2010                    1.3                                             57
09/25/2010                    1.5                                             48
10/18/2010                    1.3                                             57
12/20/2010                    1.1                                             69

Creatinine is a breakdown product of creatine, which is an important part of muscle. It is removed from the body by the kidneys. Creatinine test is used to evaluate kidney function.  If kidney function is abnormal, creatinine levels will increase in the blood because less creatinine is released through your urine. Females usually have a lower creatinine than males, because they usually have less muscle mass. Creatinine levels also vary according to a person's size and muscle mass.

GFR is the abbreviation of glomerular filtration rate. GFR test is used to check how well the kidneys are working. Specifically, it estimates how much blood passes through the tiny filters in the kidneys, called glomeruli, each minute.     

According to the National Kidney Foundation, normal results range from 90 - 120 mL/min. Older people will have lower normal GFR levels, because GFR decreases with age. Levels below 60 mL/min for 3 or more months are a sign of chronic kidney disease. Those with GFR results below 15 mL/min are a sign of kidney failure.

Paul's last blood test (12/20/2010) showed that his creatinine is within normal range now and his GFR is increased, close to the normal range. This two data indicated that his kidney function has been significant improved. Paul and his wife are very happy. He brought a pot of poinsettia flower to me when he came today. I told him that the treatment is better to continue further for better result.

Treatment reslut from Paul has significant demonstared the advantage of traditional Chinese medicine for health problems that modern medicine unable to treat.  


Treatment of stroke with acupuncture and herbal formula

On Dec.1, Mrs. Hu (female, age 65) came to my clinic accompanied by her husband. She stated that on Nov.23 last month, to welcome her daughter’s family come for Thanksgiving, she made house cleaning including painting by herself, but one hour after she finished the work, she fallen down from the chair and was sent to the ER. She was diagnosed stroke. The MRI indicated that there was a small block in vessel of her right side of the brain. She was treated and sent back to home the next day. Although she was able to walk, her left hand was weak and the fingers were unable to close together and hold anything, not to mention cooking and wearing cloth. The doctor let her eat asprin. But she did not see any improvement after taking it for one week. She often read my articles in the news papers, thus decided to come here.
After diagnosis, I suggested her have acupuncture and herbal treatment simultaneously. I explained to her that acupuncture is very effective for stroke sepuela, such as paralysis, weakness, or numbness because it could directly stimulate the nerve function, while the herbal formula was for improvement of the blood circulation. She agreed. Right after the electrical acupuncture treatment, the patient felt improvement of the finger movement. Although it was difficult, the thumb, index and middle finger tips of her left hand were able to touch each other. I prescribed herbal formula and asked her to come back in three days for the second acupuncture treatment.
She came back three days later. She told me that the fingers of the left hands were able to control and move with strength, but still not completely recovered yet. With total three acupuncture treatments, her fingers were completely recovered. Her husband was very happy because she could cook for him again.
I told the patient that after the ten days administration of herbal formula, she can change to take the capsule of Tri-Circulator I developed. I suggested her better to take it regularly to maintain the blood circulation and elasticity of her blood vessel. The reason was that even though she was recovered this time, there must be more or less embolus moving in her blood which might adhere to any parts of her vessels any time. This is why many patients with stroke or coronary artery disease (CAD) have the second or even third time onset later. One example is the previous president, Bill Clinton who got two heart surgeries. Researchers have scientifically confirmed that Chinese herbal formulas could effectively eliminate the thrombus and embolus. Tri-Circulator capsule can effectively improve the blood circulation. Many of my patients with stroke, CAD, or symptoms caused by poor circulation such as difficult breath, palpitation, finger numbness, have taken it with satisfied results.

The surgery for stroke or CAD could remove the thrombus, but is unable to prevent its recurrence. The blood thinners can prevent the formation of thrombus, but they have high risk of blood bleeding. In comparison with the surgery and blood thinners, a good Chinese herbal formula can not only improve blood circulation by eliminating the thrombus and embolus, but also improve vessel elasticity, thus, very effective in preventing the onset of stroke or CAD. And it has no bleeding side effect.
Patients with stroke became disabled because the nerves that control the body function were impacted due to the poor circulation around it. In the affiliated hospital of Liaoning College of Traditional Chinese medicine where I worked in China, more than half of the in-patient were disabled stroke patients who were directly transferred from medical hospital after ER treatment. With the combined treatment of acupuncture and herbal formulas, most people recovered by these treatments with the explanation in the 2nd paragraph.

It is necessary to remind readers that people with hypertension and diabetes have higher chance of vessel blockage, particularly in heart or brain. In addition, diabetes patients also easily have circulation problems at foot, eyes and kidneys. Most of my patient with stroke or CAD have either hypertension or diabetes, or both. Therefore, I strongly recommend hypertension and diabetes patients take some herbal products regularly to prevent the stroke and CAD.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Treatment of recurrent carbuncles with acupuncture and herbs

A carbuncle is usually caused by bacterial infection, most commonly Staphylococcus aureus. It usually grows on buttock, back, or nape of the neck. It may develop very fast, take only 2-3 days to the size with diameter between 3-6 cm, larger than a boil. It is red and irritated, hard at the beginning, hurt when press. The center will turn to soft and white or yellow with pus. The pus then rapture and drains out. In addition to the discomfort, symptoms such as fatigue and fever may occur sometimes. The infection is contagious and may spread to other areas of the body. Men get carbuncles more often than women. The medical doctor may prescribe antibacterial soaps to clean the skin and oral antibiotics to kill bacteria. If it became worse, proper incision may be given. Few individuals may have recurrent carbuncles at different places. This may be caused by stress or poor immune function. Antibiotics and surgery can cure the carbuncle, but they are unable to prevent the recurrence. What is the best way to prevent the recurrence then? 

Last Thursday, a male patient (Chen, age 48) came to my clinic with such a problem. He said that in the past half year, several carbuncles developed one another on his bottom. His family doctor gave him antibiotics, but the medicine could inhibit the carbuncle at the beginning, however, new carbuncles always grew again within a month after stop taking the antibiotics. And the antibiotics failed to take effect later because the bacteria gradually produced resistance to the medicine by gene mutantation. The doctor then had to cut the last two with surgery a week ago. But soon in one week, another new one came out again. He knew that it would become bigger within one or two days. He did not want to have surgery any more, thus decided to try Chinese medicine. He found me after he prayed.

I gave an examination first. The carbuncle was just came out, so was still small, hard and red, the size was about a nickel. I told the patient that I would give him acupuncture and maxibustion treatment, meanwhile prepare herbal formula for five days to let him take daily. I also suggest him to take some herbal medicine to enhance his immune function after the carbuncle being treated. He accepted my plan. After the treatment, I told him to come the next day. He came back last Friday. The carbuncle did not grow, and the area with hardness reduced to a size of azuki bean. I gave him another treatment of acupuncture and maxibustion, then told him come back when he finished the herbal medicine. He did not show up this week. When I called him yesterday, he told me the carbuncle has disappeared. He will come back soon when he has time for herbs enhancing his immune function.           

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Dizziness and numbness caused by poor blood circulation

In late October, Paul (age 57) came to my clinic accompanies by his wife. He said he had been feeling severe dizzy and fatigue recently. For this reason, he had been off the work for two weeks. His family doctor could not find any reason directly causing the problems. But the recent blood test showed his glomerular filtration rate (GFR) was lower than normal, and he had been taken antihypertension drug for 3 years. Thus, the doctor told him not to intake sodium and proteins. But after he followed

the doctor’s instruction, the symptoms became even worse. In addition to these problems, he mentioned that he has genetic thalassemia, and his hands, particularly the fingers, had been felt numbness, particularly when the fingers were curved and his feet have been felt cold for several years. To avoid being waked up by the severe numbness of fingers and cold on feet during sleep, he had to wear braces to keep his fingers straight, and his feet must be wrapped with an additional blanket every night. Besides, he also felt negative and have no interest in anything. His wife added that he had symptoms of depression.

Based on the above statement and pulse and tongue diagnosis, I told the patient that his problems were caused by the poor Qi and blood circulation. I treated him with acupuncture and Chinese herbal formula. The treatment was focusing on the dizziness and fatigue first, then the numbness and kidney problem. When he came back for the 2nd acupuncture treatment, he told me that the dizziness has been reduced. But after the 2nd treatment, he stopped coming for acupuncture treatment and taking herbal medicine because his dentist asked him taking antibiotics for his tooth problem.

About half month later, his wife called me to explain the reason and said the dizziness became worse again, so wanted to come for further treatment. This time, I told him that the treatment needs to be continued for best result. The patient promised to come twice per week. He also mentioned that his neck could not move around freely and his neck felt very tight. Therefore, the acupuncture points were modified. With four continuously acupuncture treatment while taking herbal formulas, the patient’s dizziness was completely gone in two weeks. The treatment was switched to the numbness. When he came last Tuesday after another four times acupuncture and modified herbal medicine treatments after the second two weeks, his numbness of fingers completely disappeared. He told me that his hands had not been feel numbness without taking the braces for three days and his feet felt warmer during the sleep, thus no extra blanket was needed for them. I told him that we could then focus on the functional regulation of the kidneys. Because he has no symptoms with the kidneys, the result has to be known when he gets the blood test next month.

Although the patient had severe problems, the medicine doctor could not tell him the exact reason. This is because his symptoms were caused by functional disorders rather than damage in his organs or tissues. The tightness of his muscle on the neck impacted his blood supply to his brain, consequently affected the nerves, thus causing dizziness, depression and fatigue. With the same reason, the poor peripheral circulation of blood in his four limbs caused his hands numbness and feet coldness.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

What is the biggest difference between modern medicine and traditional Chinese medicine?

The human body is very complex and has a complicated self-adjusting system, whose functional substances have been recently known as the neuroendocrine immune network. The biggest difference between modern medicine and traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) is that the former is an allopathic system, in which the self-adjusting function of the human body has been overlooked, while the TCM particularly emphasizes on the regulation of the self adjusting function, which mainly covered by the functions of Qi and blood that circulating in the meridians and collaterals in TCM. Although the new Neuroendocrine Immunology found the interaction between the nervous, endocrine and immune systems, it has neglected the important role of the circulation to these three systems. Specifically, the nerve cells and cells in the endocrine glands as well as immune organs all need blood supply for nourishment with nutrients and excretion of metabolites.  Both acupuncture and Chinese herbal formula are able to regulate the self adjusting function through improving the circulation of Qi and blood.         

Friday, December 3, 2010

Importance of blood circulation for health

TCM emphasizes maintaining an unobstructed  circulation of Qi and blood, as obstructed Qi and blood are considered the cause of many diseases. As far as we know, thrombosis not only effects coronary and cerebral arteries, causing  heart attack and stroke,  but also effects pulmonary, portal, renal, hepatic, cerebral, and extremity veins – causing all kinds of symptoms or diseases.

Circulatory (blood + lymphatic) systems delivers nutrients to cells throughout the body, and also carries metabolized wastes out from tissues and organs. Only unobstructed blood flow can keep cells alive, thus health and quality of life. Cells, including neurons that regulating functions of organs and tissues will die if accumulating the wastes inside or not receiving enough nutrients.

Take the brain as an example. There are more than 100 billion neurons (nerve cells) in the human brain, composed of the central and peripheral nerve systems. The nerve systems regulate the cardiovascular, respiratory, digestive and eliminative functions, maintain hormone secretion, as well as control the movement of limbs, language, memory, recognition, thinking, etc. The brain weight is only 2% of the body weight, but it needs 20% of the total blood supply.

The nerve cells use the nutrients provided from blood to synthesize neurotransmitters which control the regulations mentioned above. The brain cells can only function well when they receive enough nutrients from the blood, otherwise will die. Chronic insomnia, anxiety, poor memory, tinnitus, depressant, some types of headache, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s are all related to blood deficiency in brain.

Keeping circulatory system function well is crucial for preventing diseases and aging!!!
Maintain your body is more important than maintain your cars. 

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Holism is the most important characteristic of Chinese medicine

The concept of holism in Traditioanl Chinese Medicine (TCM) considers the various parts of the human body as an organic whole, emphasizing the coordination of the internal organs among each other and the harmony of the human body with the external environment.

TCM believes the human body is a complex network of connections, made up of channels and collaterals, which cover the neuroendocrine-immune  network and circulatory (blood and lymphatic) systems in modern science. These networks not only connect the internal organs, but also control their functions through Qi and  blood. Through these connection, the dysfunction of an organ may impact the functions of other organs. Therefore, treatments with Chinese medicine and acupuncture are based on this concept.