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Journal of Chinese Integrative Medicine ›› 2006, Vol. 4 ›› Issue (4): 339-342.doi: 10.3736/jcim20060404

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Gross conception of anatomical structure of zang-fu viscera in Huangdi Neijing

Ye-tao Gao1, Hui-wei Pan2, Sheng-bing Wu2   

  1. 1. School of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Macao University of Science and Technology, Macao, China
    2. Department of Integrated Traditional Chinese and Western Medicine, Third Hospital, Second Military Medical University, Shanghai 200438, China
  • Online:2006-07-31 Published:2006-07-15

The scientificalness of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) is often doubted and criticized for the record in Huangdi Neijing that the liver is located in the left of the human body. The most popular explanation of this criticism is that the conception of zang-fu viscera in TCM is quite different from which defined in Western medicine. It means that the zang-fu viscera in TCM are not exactly the corresponding anatomical organs in modern human anatomy but reflect the functions of some systems in human body. According to the classical theories of TCM in Huangdi Neijing, we consider that the record of liver located in the left of the human body is based on the Ba Gua (Eight Diagrams) of traditional Chinese philosophy, not the human anatomy. In brief, the conception of zang-fu viscera is initially a gross anatomical conception, and in a sense the anatomic sites and functions of which are mostly similar to those described in Western medicine.

Key words: Huangdi Neijing, Zang-fu viscera, Anatomy

CLC Number: 

  • R221
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