Chinese Herbal Medicine
Together with acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine is a major pillar of Traditional Chinese Medicine.
It is historically the primary healthcare system in China and parts of East Asia. Chinese herbal medicine has developed over thousands of years, and is continually being refined.
Chinese herbal medicine now has over 6,000 different medicinal substances (herbs). These herbs have been traditionally used for a wide variety of health conditions. Other modalities of herbal medicine focus on the pharmacological properties of their herbs. In contrast, Chinese herbal medicine is an energetic medicine. Each herb is said to have an energetic property, which on interaction with the human body, is able to affect the body at an energetic level.
Traditional Chinese herbs are classified according to their said energetic qualities and functions. They are defined by terms such as warming, cooling, tonifying, or detoxifying etc. These descriptions describe the overall energetic make-up of the herb and for what purpose they would be prescribed.
In clinical practice, around 300 common herbs are used. They are in the form of seeds, roots, stems, leaves, twigs, fruit, grass and flowers. Australian law prohibits the importation of herbs which may be unethical. At the Fertility & IVF Acupuncture Clinic almost all herbs which are dispensed are plant based. If it is considered necessary to prescribe anything else, permission from the patient will be asked beforehand.
Traditionally, Chinese herbs have been dispensed in raw form. To prepare a decoction raw herbs need to be soaked in a pot, brought to boil then simmered. This process is time consuming and open to error. To solve this problem, herbal medicine at the Fertility & IVF Acupuncture Clinic is dispensed in concentrated powder form. These are high quality, better standardised and easier to prepare. The powder is simply added to hot water to make a tea and typically taken twice a day.