This exciting new book, Pulse Diagnosis: A Clinical Guide describes a reliable method of pulse assessment. The authors' style and approach to pulse diagnosis provides a unique insight into this often ambiguous system of diagnosis drawing upon the traditions of Chinese medicine, the knowledge of biomedical constructs and the relationship of each to contemporary TCM clinical practice. Subjects covered include exploration of the concept of 'pulse' and establishment of it within the context of health, current limitations of current pulse literature in relation to clinical practice, pulse diagnosis within contemporary TCM clinical practice and pulse taking procedures.
Pulse diagnosis is widely regarded as a core component of the diagnostic framework of Chinese medicine. Such regard for pulse diagnosis is founded on the premise that pulse assessment is a clinically reliable diagnostic method. The validity of the pulse as a diagnostic tool tends to be founded on its historical roots in antiquity; because pulse diagnosis has been in use for so long, its validity is rarely questioned. Such uncritical acceptance of the information provided by classical texts (and reiterated in contemporary literature) has left the pedagogical framework for the use of pulse diagnosis compromised, and subsequently its reliability as a diagnostic tool is questionable. In many cases, the information available for practitioners is either ambiguous, lacking clear instruction on the use of pulse diagnosis, or contradictory, with different authors holding opposing views. This paper aims to clarify some of the problems associated with the use of pulse diagnosis in a modern context, and to encourage practitioners to identify misconceptions regarding pulse diagnosis, thus facilitating its use as a reliable diagnostic tool in contemporary clinical practice.
King, EJ, Walsh, SP & Cobbin, DM 2006, 'The testing of classical pulse concepts in Chinese medicine Left- and right-hand pulse strength discrepancy between males and females and its clinical implications', Journal Of Alternative And Complementary Medicine, vol. 12, no. 5, pp. 445-450.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Objectives and design: The use of the radial pulse as a diagnostic tool is an important part of the Chinese medicine (CM) clinical evaluation. This study reports the findings of an investigation into inter-arm pulse strength differences in subjects and t
The use of the radial pulse as a diagnostic tool is an integral part of the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) patient evaluation. In spite of its long history of use, there is little systematic information available to support the many claims about the relationship between pulse qualities and physiological condition contained in the ancient Chinese texts and echoed in modern pulse terminology. This study reports the development of a reliable means of measuring and recording pulse characteristics. This was achieved by reporting on the physical sensations that are detected under the fingertips when the radial pulse is palpated, rather than attempting to translate these into the complex and typically ambiguously defined TCM pulse qualities. The study involved development of a standardised pulse taking procedure and development of concrete operational definitions for each of the characteristics of the pulse being measured. The inter-rater reliability of the pulse taking procedure and operational definitions was assessed by determining agreement levels between two independent pulse assessors for each characteristic. Inter-rater agreement averaged 80% between the two assessors in both the initial data collection (66 subjects) and in a replication collection (30 subjects) completed two months later. Demonstrating reliability of the procedure represents an essential first step for examining the validity of TCM pulse diagnosis assumptions.