Case Number 60

  • Asaf Goldschmidt
Part of the Archimedes book series (ARIM, volume 54)


In this case Xu Shuwei takes up an issue relevant to medical practice then and today, the need to be patient until the medication takes it full effect. He straightforwardly diagnoses the patient. The patient consumes the medicine, but manifests a new symptom, namely restlessness in the arms and legs. At that point someone raises an objection to Xu’s treatment, asserting that he should have applied cooling drugs, which probably was the conventional therapy. Xu defends himself by quoting from the Treatise, which cautions that one has to wait patiently for the medication to work. Waiting indeed solves the problem. In other words, Xu is warning physicians to let the treatment take its course, even if initially it looks like the patient is taking a turn for the worse.


Other Sources:

  1. ———. 2008. “Commercializing Medicine or Benefiting the People – The First Public Pharmacy in China.” Science in Context 21.3: 311–350.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Scheid, Volker, Dan Bensky, Andrew Ellis, and Randall Barolet. 2009. Chinese Herbal Medicine: Formulas and Strategies. Seattle: Eastland Press.Google Scholar
  3. Yu, Bohai 于伯海, et. al. 1997. Shanghan jinkui wenbing mingzhu jicheng 伤寒金匮温病名著集成 [Collected Famous Works on Cold Damage, Golden Casket, and Febrile Disorders]. Beijing, Huaxia chubanshe.Google Scholar

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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Asaf Goldschmidt
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of East Asian StudiesTel Aviv UniversityTel AvivIsrael
  2. 2.Visiting ProfessorRenmin University of ChinaBeijingChina

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