A life spent studying Chinese medicine and treating complex diseases

Tan Weiyun
Songjiang native Zhang Jinsan was a prominent figure in TCM in the early to mid-20th century. He spent his life studying medicine and treating complicated illnesses.
Tan Weiyun
A life spent studying Chinese medicine and treating complex diseases

Zhang Jinsan (张近三 1901–1978), a Songjiang native, was a distinguished figure in the field of traditional Chinese medicine during the early to mid-20th century. His life's journey was marked by a relentless pursuit of medical knowledge and a dedication to treating complex ailments.

Shen Langu, Zhang's father-in-law, was his early mentor in his hometown, where he studied traditional Chinese medicine. Later, he established his practice. In 1920, he moved to downtown Shanghai, where he met the renowned physician Xia Yingtang, who took him under his wing.

Under Xia's guidance, Zhang mastered the intricacies of both traditional Chinese internal and external medicine.

With his expertise firmly established, Zhang returned to Songjiang. His dedication to the study and practice of medicine quickly earned him the respect and admiration of the community.

He assumed the position of Chief of Traditional Chinese Medicine at the Financial Workers' Hospital in Shanghai in 1956. Subsequently, in 1958, he was appointed as the head of the Department of Traditional Chinese Medicine at the Tilanqiao Central Hospital, now known as the Hongkou District Central Hospital.

In five decades, Zhang demonstrated exceptional proficiency in the diagnosis and treatment of complex internal and external medical conditions, with a specific emphasis on the formidable condition known as myasthenia gravis.

He delved into the realm of traditional Chinese medical theory in 1964 to identify the root causes of the disease, tracing it to deficiencies in the spleen and kidneys.

His treatment approach focused on nourishing and replenishing these vital organs, yielding remarkable results.

In 1973, he expanded his research, examining 30 cases of myasthenia gravis and proposing the Spleen-Kidney theory, shedding light on the pathogenesis, diagnostic and treatment methods, and guiding principles for addressing the disease.

He refined his theory further by placing greater emphasis on the predominance of splenic deficiency and highlighting it as a crucial component of the treatment regimen.

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