Chinese medicine and bird flu

Orthodox medicine currently does not offer any solutions for the bird flu. Chinese Medicine may be of help if or when it spreads worldwide.

Numerous Chinese herbs have antiviral effects. These herbs were successfully used by staff at the hospital of a university in Hong Kong to prevent SARS.

Current laws do not allow to patent herbs. Roche, a Swedish pharmaceutical company found a way around this. It developed Tamiflu, a medication extracted from one of Chinese medicines, star anise. The company uses 90% of the world supply of star anise to transform it into Tamiflu pills. The idea would have been great, but… when you extract something and start to use a high dose of it, you can expect side-effects. Furthermore, in Chinese medicine we use a mix of a few herbs and keep on changing them in the prescription to keep it effective. If the same active ingredient will be used to fight a virus, it is very likely, that that ingredient will become ineffective as the virus mutates.

Lucky we still have many other varieties of Chinese antiviral herbs that can be used should the need arise.

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