My interest in Chinese Medicine began back in my 20’s when I attended some courses in Shiatsu massage. My tutor was a very down to earth American who explained much of the theory and concepts of TCM in real physiological and scientific terms. This approach has stayed with me throughout my subsequent training and practice within Traditional Acupuncture.
I believe that traditional and contemporary approaches can prove complimentary to each other. I have a deep respect for the classic Chinese texts written thousands of years ago. Their understanding of the human body alongside detailed anatomical drawings fill me with awe. (Yellow Emperor, Sun Si Miao). At the same time however, I feel it’s important to keep up to date with current research and always be open to continued learning and development of new approaches to treatment.
I consider myself a calm, methodical practitioner. It’s important for me to set out clear, realistic goals for treatment and achieve real measurable results. The BAcC are keen for Acupuncturists to work alongside GP’s, something which I whole-heartedly agree with. The most important thing is that patients recieve the most appropriate treatment for their condition.
Having been involved in research I’m all too aware of it’s pitfalls especially with regards to acupuncture. There have been very mixed conclusions come out of acupuncture research over the years and one of the biggest critisms has been towards quality of methodology.
Research methodology aims to standardise as many elements as possible in order to reach reliable conclusions as to cause and effect. Patients with the same Western medicine diagnoses, may recieve different TCM treatment which makes standardising protocols impossible and frustrating to WM researchers. There are also issues concerning placebo which is a huge problem within research even for standard drug trials.
Listen to the Chinese Medicine blues by Peter Firebrace, an acupuncturist, international lecturer and author who has studied the Chinese medical and philosophical classics for over 25 years. The song is his response to the ASA rulings over how traditional acupuncturists can advertise.