Welcome to Millwoods Acupuncture Centre

Millwoods Acupuncture Center
102, 2603 Hewes Way
Edmonton AB,   Canada

Phone: (780) 466-8683



Side effects of the Traditional Chinese Medicine



Traditional Chinese Medicine also has side effects

You may heard that Traditional Chinese Medicine has no side effects. This is not completely true. Of course, the side effects of the Chinese herbs, the acupuncture, the moxibustion, and the bleeding therapy, etc., is much less than the chemical drugs used by the conventional medicine, is of course much mild compared with the chemotherapy and radiation therapy. But this does not mean that it has no side effects!

As we mentioned before, none thing we eat or drink should be too much. It includes the sugar, salt, …… even the amount of water. Then how can we say that drinking the decoction of herbs (the water extracts of the herbs) will not create any side effects?

However, the goodness is that the old Chinese know this and they have had smart ways to prevent the side effects.

First of all, they know which kinds of side effects a herb may cause, when used single or at the same time with other herbs.

Secondly, the herbs are usually treated by various ways to reduce the side effects. The commonly used ways to reduce the side effects of a herb is to, for example, drying, frying, bake, steam or coated with honey, or ginger, or other substances.

The side effects are also reduced by adding some special herbs into the formula, for instance, the Gan Cao which is well known as a side-effect reducing herbs. Some times we may also use honey to reduce the side effect of some herbs.


The side effects associated with the Traditional Chinese Medicine is usually mild

The commonly occurred side effects with the herbal therapy might be nausea, or diarrhea. With sweat therapy, it might be the over-sweating, of dizziness, palpitation if the patient has water-accumulating syndrome (the Chinese medicine concept) before the treatment. Yes, with diarrhea therapy, it might be the over-diarrhea, if the patients have frequent bowel movement usually. The goodness is that such conditions can be predicted before the use, if the herbalist is rich in clinic experience, and has carefully evaluated the patient’s basic conditions/body constitutions.

Because the Traditional Chinese Medicine is based on clinic zhen (diagnosis-valuable symptoms), any change in the zhen may need the change of the herb formula. Therefore, the side effects, if any, will be corrected just when it happens.