Generally, three scholarly traditions can be recognised in medicine:
These great achievements of humankind represent medical systems that over centuries have grown by academic discourse. Other medical practices have served patients round the world as well, yet these have not had the enrichment of continued use and critical appraisal by specialists.
However, no system is pure in itself, and while for example Japanese and Korean medicine fall under the heading of Chinese medicine, and have their roots in the classical Chinese literature, practitioners from these countries object against being seen as merely part the influence sphere of Chinese politics.
Also within the country of China, a rich and varied landscape of medical methods presents itself. Especially notable are hybrid systems that have some of their origins in Traditional Chinese Medicine, but other roots in very different schools of thought. Uyghur Medicine is a combination of Unani, Ayurveda, and Traditional Chinese Medicine. Tibetan Medicine is a combination of Ayurveda, Bon and Traditional Chinese Medicine. And Mongolian medicine is a combination of shamanism and Traditional Chinese Medicine. (2)
It is good to recognize the commonalities as well as the differences between these three systems of medicine within the borders of modern China. (3) China is a vast country, with many different beautiful traditions.
(1) Don Bates – Knowledge and Scholarly Traditions
(2) Elaine Yu – China’s Other Medical Systems: Recognizing Uyghur, Tibetan, and Mongolian Traditional Medicines (https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26937317/ )
(3) Zhen Gao – Emergence and development of Uyghur medicine from the perspective of Chinese traditional medicine DOI: 10.1142/S2575900019100037