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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 121-132

Epidemic diseases and Chinese medicine: Example of SARS and COVID-19: Part two

Georges Pompidou European Hospital Anti-Pain Center, Faculty of Medicine, Paris V René Descartes University, Paris, France

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Jean- Claude Dubois
Georges Pompidou European Hospital Anti-Pain Center, Faculty of Medicine, Paris V Rene Descartes University, Paris
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/CMAC.CMAC_32_20

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Along with the legends about epidemic demons, China has developed over the centuries a medical approach to epidemic diseases based on the teachings of Huang Di Nei Jing (《黄帝内经》Huangdi's Internal Classic), Nan Jing (《难经》Classic of Difficult Issues), and Shang Han Lun (《伤寒论》Treatise on Cold Damage). Other doctors and scientists participated in this evolution of knowledge, like Wang Shuhe (王叔和), Ge Hong (葛洪), Chao Yuanfang (巢元方), Sun Simiao (孙思邈), and Liu Wansu (刘完素). However, it was in the 17th century, after the great break of the Song, Jin, and Yuan eras that an innovative spirit, Wu Youke (吴又可 1582–1652) first foresaw the existence of microorganisms as we know them now. His Wen Yi Lun (《瘟疫论》Treatise on Pestilence) foreshadows an original approach to epidemic diseases, particularly emerging infectious diseases of the 21st century. After them, traditional Chinese medicine developed a comprehensive method of diagnosing and treating of these diseases (Epidemic Diseases Theory 瘟疫学说) within the School of Heat Diseases (温病学派). In a third article, we will examine some applications in the treatment of the SARS 2003–2004 epidemic (非典型肺炎) and the current COVID-19 (新型冠状病毒肺炎) pandemic.

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