Traditional Chinese Medicine is certainly no pseudoscience. It is approved by the World Health Organization and used by 1/3 of the world’s population. Scholarly treatises both present and for many centuries past plus continuing excellent research results published in many medical journals in both mainland and Taiwan back this up. The elegance and sophistication of it’s herbal medicine in unparrelled in the world today.
Since this is supposed to be a liberal and progressive web, I am surprised at some of the judgemental and inaccuracte comments above. As a longtime practioner (also long time Democrat) of this esteemed medical art I take umbrage at this. Many of my patients and myself had run the gamet of western medicine to no avail before finding relief and healing in this ancient yet modern medicine. We are living testaments to the power of nature based healing modalities.
Rhino horn (pinyin is "xi jiao”) is not used for “boners”. A tiny amount can save a life when the body temperature is so high the blood literally erupts from the body. The deadly new North American disease of Hanta Virus is a good example. Now days water buffalo horn is substituted albeit in much larger amounts. Among the uses of Bear bile (pinyin is "xiong dan”) is to alleviate acute febrile disease severe symptoms such as convulsions, delirium, and conjunctiva. It can also be used topically for red hot skin lesions and alleviating pain and swelling. For the most part Cattle gallstones and bile are presently substituted and recommended due to the endangered status and poor treatment of many bear species. More detailed information and research results on these two and hundreds more natural Chinese medicines can be found in the text and reference book “Chinese Herbal Medine Materia Medica” by Dan Bensky & Andrew Gamble.
Animal farming for a medicinal product in what may well be considered despicable conditions is also used done for western pharmaceutical grade estrogen. Mares have been and may still be harnessed and kept in stressfull positions to harvest female urine which is processed to form oral estrogen for human consumption. In my previous profession as a rancher I personally visited one of these farms. Tis no way to treat a horse, one of human’s best animal friends.
The diary writer may not be expressing his/her thoughts in a technical form, but please do not dismiss the information or this great medicine as anti science. Please do not believe and repeat the misinformation and inaccuracies concerning TCM herbal medicine.