Forgetting the methods and achievements of traditional Chinese medicine would be a fatal mistake, as Chinese medicine could be more effective in treating certain diseases than Western medicine, said a German professor.
"It is understandable that the Chinese people want to benefit from the advantages of Western medicine," said Professor Gustav Dobos of Duisburg-Eessen University in a news release faxed Monday to Xinhua through Gruppe M Healthcare Information Service.
"However it would be a fatal mistake if this wish would lead to forgetting the methods and achievements of traditional Chinese medicine which are based on a unique and incomparable experience and winning more and more support in western societies," he said.
His remarks came in response to an online campaign, led by Professor Zhang Gongyao of Central South University of China, which called for the removal of traditional Chinese medicine from China's public health system.
Modern Western medicine has its limit in curing stress- and age-related chronic diseases which often correlate with the western style of living and working, said the professor.
"But these illnesses are best treated with a combination of Western and traditional Chinese medicine," he said, citing Germany as a successful example in practicing the method.
In the West, there was an urgent need for a traditional Chinese medical system which individually treats the patients with methods that produce little side effects, especially for the elderly with chronic diseases, said Professor Dobos.
As China has been on the fast track of development, such illnesses as diabetes, high blood pressure and stress-related diseases are on the rise, said the professor, a regular visitor to China.
A combination of Western and traditional Chinese medicines could win ground in China, especially in big cities, he said.
Sponsored by Germany's Alfried Krupp von Bohlen and Halbach Foundation, Professor Dobos has led a clinic at an Essen hospital, combining Western and traditional Chinese herbal therapy to treat patients.
(Xinhua News Agency December 19, 2006)