Rejuvenation of acupuncture and moxibustion in China

BY | 11-27-2014

Acupuncture and moxibustion are forms of traditional Chinese medicine widely practised in China and also found in regions of south-east Asia, Europe and the Americas. The theories of acupuncture and moxibustion hold that the human body acts as a small universe connected by channels, and that by physically stimulating these channels the practitioner can promote the human body’s self-regulating functions and bring health to the patient.

Since the founding of the People’s Republic of China, the Chinese Government has paid great attention to inheriting and developing the legacy of traditional Chinese medicine and pharmacology, acupuncture and moxibustion were unprecedentedly popularized and promoted.

Since the 1950s, the research organizations of traditional Chinese medicine and pharmacology on provincial, municipal and autonomous regional levels have been set up one after the other, in which the research divisions of acupuncture and moxibustion are included.

In many city hospitals, special clinical departments of acupuncture and moxibustion have been set up. Acupuncture and moxibustion have been carried out even in commune hospitals. Many institutes and colleges of Western medicine have put it into the teaching curriculum and taken it as a scientific research item.

To apply modern scientific knowledge to the research work on the basis of exploring and inheriting the traditional acupuncture and moxibustion is the prominent characteristic of the present research on acupuncture and moxibustion.

In the early 1950s, the main work was to systematize the basic theory of acupuncture and moxibustion, to observe its clinical indications, and to make a systematic exposition of acupuncture and moxibustion with modern methods.

From the 1970s up to now, investigations have been done on the mechanism of acupuncture anesthesia and acupuncture analgesia from the viewpoints of operative surgery, anesthesiology, neuroanatomy, histochemistry, analgesia physiology, biochemistry, psychology and medical electronics, on the phenomena and nature of the meridians, and on the relationship between acupuncture points and needling sensation, between acupuncture points and zang-fu organs.

Now the accomplishments of acupuncture and moxibustion research gained in China including sorting out of the ancient legacy, the clinical effect and the theoretical research by modern scientific methods are in the forefront of the world.


Translated by Du Mei
Revised by Tom Fearon