Is Traditional Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture different in China? As many of you know, I am a fan of TCM ( Traditional Chinese Medicine) and I've already experienced it on three continents and recently wrote about the Acupuncture hospital in Penang.
TCM is best in Asia in my opinion because many of the herbs can not be imported into the USA or Europe and there is much that is past down through the generations. Asian cultures just understand it better.
I am doing fairly well with my health issues in China and I've brought some TCM herbs with me and other special supplements. One thing that is helping is the TCM doctor who is also a principal at the Mandarin school my child is immersing in and I will write more of that. I will also do a 2 day tour here learning more about combining TCM and China travel and will report on what I learn.
But dealing with new doctors, cultures and ways can sometimes be disconcerting ( even at home). I went to one very well known and respected TCM doctor and herbalist in California who was very bizarre, gave us many acupuncture needles to keep and burnt my belly quite bad with the moxibustion. I was also burnt by a TCM school in California, but never burnt in Asia or Europe, despite extensive use of moxibustion.
At one of our first dinners in China, that a very sweet friend of a friend invited us to, I experienced some China acupuncture that I was not expecting. She had heard I was having health problems so she invited her favorite TCM doctor to look at me and have dinner with us. He specialized in stomach issues and acupuncture.
Like most people here, he did not speak English, but my friend asked if I wanted a little treatment, so I said okay. Yowser! It hurt a lot and I never experienced anything like it. He was kind of super stimulating some points I know well now and one on my chin with acupuncture needles..pushing them in and out along nerves related to stomach qi. OMG! My nerves felt on fire for a while..but then I felt better...and enjoyed the scrumptious dinner. ( Usually acupuncture is a very relaxing experience and if there is nerve pain it soon subsides).
I've also been tortured by western doctors/M.D.'s, ( several MD's gave me medicine that made me feel much worse in California and the IV dye for my abdominal MRI there put me in excrutiating pain ( primarily in my kidneys where I had no problems before) for ten days.
So I suppose the moral of the story is one never knows exactly what one is getting into at home or abroad when one seeks medical help of any kind and travel health around the world can be quite an adventure in itself.