Acupuncture / moxibustion, herbal medicine, tui na, zheng gu, qi gong, cupping, and gua sha are all modalities of treatment from same ancient medical system called Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). This medical system originated no later than 2,500 years ago in east Asia, and is still practiced in the present day around the globe. It is a separate and distinct diagnostic system from conventional “Western medicine” which has it’s roots in the ancient Greek medical tradition.
Fundamental theory of TCM is founded upon east Asian philosophical concepts such as yin and yang, and five phases. These principles instruct the perception of environment, anatomy, physiology, pathophysiology, diagnosis, and treatment. So while a TCM doctor observes the same objective phenomena as a western doctor, they evaluate the clinical significance through two different perspectives. Though it must be stressed that TCM and western medicine are not mutually exclusive, and the modern TCM doctor is trained to understand and recruit appropriate utilization of Western medicine. In fact, in modern day Chinese hospitals, TCM and western medicine are clinically integrated.