History of sickness and medical art 28: China 3

 medical book “Huangdi Neijing”

<1. medical book “Huangdi Neijing”>


This time, I look at how people recognized the sickness in those days.



 Restored instruments of acupuncture in “Huangdi Neijing” 

< 2. Restored instruments of acupuncture in “Huangdi Neijing” >


The oldest medical book “Huangdi Neijing”

This Chinese oldest medical book is written in the form that legendary Yellow Emperor discusses with a subject.

It was written in the first century B.C.

This form resembles the pattern that a legendary wizard had a dialogue with a king in ” Caraka Sanhita” of India.

It consists of pathology, general remarks of physiology, and clinical medicine including diagnosis, treatment, acupuncture and moxibustion.


“ People are kept alive by life energy ( Qi ) of nature, and is controlled with the rule of four seasons”

From ancient times, in China (East Asia), people think people being harmonize with nature, and it becomes sickness when balance collapses.











this Classic Taoist Taijitu shows “Yin and Yang” 

< 3. this Classic Taoist Taijitu shows “Yin and Yang” >


The fundamental theory is in Confucian doctrine” I Ching”.

It is said that people take birth with life energy ( Qi ) of “ Yin and Yang”, and people get sick if the harmony in the body was lost.

Furthermore, it was assumed that the human body is made of wood, fire, soil, gold, and water.

The basic elements of every phenomena and things were assigned to five.

There was 4 body fluid theory in Greece medicine, but there was 5 body fluid theory in China.

Moreover, people recognized that all blood was under rule of the heart, circulated through it continuously, and didn’t stop.








Meridian of “Huangdi Neijing” 

< 4.   Meridian of “Huangdi Neijing” >


Moreover, there is the 12 principal meridians in body, and life energy ( Qi ) circulates through this course.

It presupposed that health can be maintained by keeping this circulation normal, and the sickness is treated by giving acupuncture and moxibustion.

Moreover, it presupposed the sickness was divided into two, one of it depended on external factor such as wind, chill, dryness, humidity, and other depended on inner factor of joy, pathos, anger, fear, etc.





     Zhang Zhongling

< 5. Zhang Zhongling >


The oldest clinical medical book “Shanghan Lun”

This book was written by Zhang Zhongling of good doctor at the end of the Han dynasty, and was a monument that told the birth of experience medicine.

He was called Hippocrates.

In a preface, he wrote his families had died in large quantities in a short term and 70 percent of it was “Shanghan”, and indicated the motive of writing the book.

He systematically explained the treatment of “Shanghan” from the onset of a disease to the death, and medical treatment was explained mainly by medicines only, but the etiology was not explained.










Categories: history+evolution, <english language, <japanese language, science, Series: History of sickness and medical art | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

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2 thoughts on “History of sickness and medical art 28: China 3

  1. fascinating!

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