Classical Chinese Medicine

Dr. Tran is a not small, square shouldered and strong jawed surgeon from Nice, France. I first met him at a seminar he was presenting at my place of work, Northwestern Health Sciences University. I little suspected at the time that I would become a 'fellow student' of Classical Chinese medicine when I signed up for the lectures on understanding and treatment of joint and muscle pain of recent origin. But I was easily won by his rigor, passion about patient care, vehemence that there is only one patient who shares a physical-chemical, hormonal, electrical-being with an energetic-mood, vitality and inheritance-body. He teaches fusion medicine, the leaf that we see moving has a cause for that movement, the wind; the physical is driven by the energetic.

In the past twelve years we have shared a week twice a year to cover all that the Classics of Chinese medicine have to contribute to allopathic treatment. He gave up a strong surgical practice to translate, research and teach internationally with his mentor Nguyen Van Nghi, MD. With a sparkle in his eyes that may have come from his visits to the Baccarat table at Monte Carlo he speaks of the need to integrate the ancient energetic understanding of health to complete the Western picture of well being.

In the seminars Dr. Tran begins each exploration with all that Western Medicine can say about a problem; from gynecology to ophthalmology and everything in-between. Then, item by item, he one by one compares the things written more than two thousand years ago about the subject with the observations of science. At the end of the comparison there is a list of “idiopathic” complaints about which our doctors say little—but the ancient doctors in China were conversant about these complaints because they are rooted in solely energetic pathomechanism.

Such is the case of migraine; there is a clear understanding in the ancient literature of the energetic blockage that brings on the headache. This energetic blockage has a distinct precursor and the symptoms patients experience that relate to the ability to manifest migraine show up again and again in clinical practice. The sensations written about in the Ling Shu (chapter 38 paragraph 10) describe the actions necessary to decrease the incidence of migraine. Elsewhere the actions that need to be taken in the acupuncture clinic to try to stop a migraine headache are described, both theoretically and practically.

Our seminar time is divided into morning sessions where the understanding of each topic is made clear and the afternoon sessions where the rubber really meets the road. Patients come in with complaints and Dr. Tran demonstrated the practice of acupuncture driven by the understanding of the Classics. Having done this for nearly four decades with his teacher, Nguyen Van Nghi, MD in France, Spain Portugal, Montreal, Germany Brazil, Vietnam and China he has developed a style of ease in demonstrating effective treatment to all the myriad problems patients bring

This is where I watched time and again his approach to treat acute migraine and how to diagnose and treat the propensity to develop migraine. I have had time to practice this in clinic and am satisfied that the theory that is borne out in practice deserves to be shared more widely. I will try to make this information available while respecting the guidelines of If in my excitement and passion to see more patients find meaningful relief I move to fast or too far then we will seek the avenue or approach that makes sense to this fine venue.

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