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About the Authors

John McDonald is one of Australia's foremost acupuncture educators and writers. Over the
last twenty-five years of teaching and practice he has held academic positions in six colleges.
He has been dean of Traditional Chinese Medicine at the New South Wales College of Natural
Therapies and head of the acupuncture department at the Brisbane College of Traditional
Acupuncture and Natural Therapies. Currently John is curriculum consultant and senior
lecturer in the acupuncture department at the Australian College of Natural Medicine,
Brisbane, the first private college in Australia to be government-accredited to offer a Bachelor
of Health Science in Acupuncture. John wrote four of the new subjects for the degree
application as well as contributing substantially to the degree documentation process. He
received his Diploma in Acupuncture in 1973 and his Bachelor of Acupuncture from The
International College of Oriental Medicine in The Netherlands in 1978. He is also a
Registered Psychiatric Nurse in Queensland. In addition, John has written many fine articles
on acupuncture for various magazines and acupuncture journals and has lectured extensively
throughout Australia, New Zealand, the Philippines, South America and North America. John
also maintains a successful acupuncture practice on the Gold Coast.

Dr. Joel Penner is a graduate of The University of California at Berkeley. He spent several
years in the entertainment industry prior to returning to school to study Oriental Medicine. Dr.
Penner received his initial training at Emperor's College of Traditional Oriental Medicine in
Santa Monica, California and received his Doctorate from SAMRA University in Los
Angeles. He is licensed as an Acupuncturist by the State of California.

Dr. Penner has been active in the Oriental Medicine Community on many levels. In addition
to operating a successful practice in Los Angeles, he served on the board of directors and was
Treasurer of The California Association of Oriental Medicine. He is also past president of The
Center for Oriental Medical Research and Education.

Dr. Penner is also a noted author, lecturer and teacher. He is a Professor of Oriental Medicine
and has served on the faculties of Yo San University of Oriental Medicine, SAMRA
University and Emperor's College where he also served as chairman of the Department of

Zang Fu Syndromes: Differential Diagnosis and Treatment

Zang Fu Syndromes: Differential Diagnosis and Treatment serves as both a textbook for
students of Traditional Chinese Medicine and an excellent clinical reference book for
practitioners. This 565 - page book covers one of the most important areas of Chinese
diagnosis and treatment. Included are 87 Zang Fu syndromes arranged by their association
with the five elemental energies: metal, earth, wood, fire, and water. The book was designed
to be `user friendly' by both students and practitioners. Here is a list of some of the benefits
we believe make this book an outstanding source text on Zang Fu diagnosis.

All of the syndromes are in outline form for easy reference, including:

o Etiology

o Clinical manifestations
o Complications

o Associated western conditions

o Treatment Principle

o Common Acupuncture points

o Common Herbal formulas

o Differential Diagnosis

Herbal Formulas are also in outline form and include:

o The name of the formulas in Pin Yin, Chinese characters, and all known
English translations
o Actions of the formulas

o Syndromes the formula treats

o Clinical manifestations

o Associated western conditions

o Contraindications

o Modifications

Major functions are given for acupuncture points and herbs contained within the
formulas appropriate for each syndrome.

All syndromes and herb formulas are cross-referenced.

There is an exhaustive index, which includes:

o A complete symptom index

o A Pin Yin formula index

o An English formula index

o A Latin individual herb index

o A Pin Yin herb index

o A point index

o A tongue index

o A pulse index
Through use of the indices, the practitioner should find this book extremely helpful in refining
his/her diagnostic skills and will certainly find that the treatment sections provide a firm
starting point for selection of points and herbal formulas.

Zang Fu Syndromes: Differential Diagnosis and Treatment is being used as a required text in
Chinese Medicine schools world wide and has become a valuable addition not only to text
material in the English speaking world, but also an invaluable resource for the practitioner in
the clinical setting.

"Zang Fu Syndromes:
Differential Diagnosis and Treatment"

William Morris
Academic Dean, Emporer's College, Los Angeles, CA.
published in T.C.M. World

At last, a complete clinical reference text on the differential diagnosis and treatment of Zang
Fu syndromes has emerged. Drs. John McDonald and Joel Penner have elucidated the Zang
Fu model in an easy to use, and accessible format. Although there are other materials
available on the subject, "Zang Fu Syndromes: Differential Diagnosis and Treatment" has the
distinct virtue of being comprehensive and well organized.

The syndromes are presented according to the five elements. Each chapter begins with
diagrams that clearly lay out each of the Zang Fu patterns within an element, concluding with
flow charts that demonstrate the interrelationships of the various related patterns. There is an
in-depth study of several syndromes, their etiology, clinical manifestations, complications,
associated Western conditions, differential diagnosis and treatment principles. Treatment
options presented include acupuncture, with the functions of recommended points and comm
only used herbal formulas. Each formulae is cross-referenced, by page number, to an
extensive section on herbal formulas.

The formula section allows the practitioner or student to match syndromes with their
appropriate formulas, and provides a detailed look at the individual herbs within the formula,
dosages, actions of the formula, clinical manifestations, western associated diseases,
contraindications and modifications. Although it is clear that the authors were not attempting
to reproduce the materia medica, what they have done is provided a selective amount of
information that enables the practitioner or student to choose an herbal formula with a
competent understanding of its uses.

The 241-page index renders this book uniquely organized and useful. The authors state in
their introduction that the indexes were created in order to make the volume "user friendly," it
has accomplished just that. This index includes: a Pin Yin formula index, a Latin individual
herb index, a pin yin individual herb index, a points index, a tongue and pulse index and a
very extensive symptom index.

Whether used in the classroom as a learning tool or in the clinic as a reference book, Zang Fu
Syndromes: Differential Diagnosis and Treatment provides its readers with the foundation
from which sound diagnostic and treatment protocols may be derived and implemented. This
book is a valuable tool in the practice of Chinese Medicine, and an excellent tome on this
fundamental model of TCM practice.
"Zang Fu Syndromes:
Differential Diagnosis and Treatment"

Orest V. Pelechaty

Acupuncture Physician, Oriental Medicine Doctor

The American Acupuncturist Update

Oriental Medicine Doctors John McDonald and Joel Penner have provided us with a handy
reference book both for the busy practitioner of acupuncture and the beginning level
professional TCM herbalist.

As the Preface tells us, this textbook was originally written for the use of the students and
teaching staff of the Department of Traditional Chinese Medicine at New South Wales
College of Natural Therapies. It will likely prove very useful to many students and faculty of
other TCM colleges in the English speaking world. The major source in the preparation of this
book was a Chinese text entitled "Zang Fu Zheng Shi" (Study of Zang Fu Syndromes) printed
in 1980 by Tianjin Science and Technology Publishing House. Other material was
incorporated to round out the work for Western training practitioners of Chinese medicine.

Since this book is designed to cover a specialized area in Traditional Chinese Medicine
diagnosis, some assumptions have been made about the readers' knowledge of basic
Traditional Chinese Medicine theory. The discrimination of patterns, and the accurate
distinction of diagnostic criteria for such assessment, are fundamentals which the authors
expect their readers to have "under their belt". For example, familiarity with the process of
Phlegm Formation and the causes and effects of Stagnation of Qi, Stagnation of Blood,
Stagnation of Food and Damp Stagnation are assumed.

This work will be a valuable addition to the primary text material in the English speaking
world, and also an invaluable resource for the OM practitioner in the clinical setting. Through
use of the indexes, the practitioner will find this book helpful in refining his/her TCM
diagnosis. Overall, the delivery of information is efficient, with a Five Phase structure for the
Zang Fu syndromes, a separate chapter on Complex Syndromes, and complemented with very
lucid charts and tables.

As co-author Penner states: "The indexes have been organized in order to make this volume
user friendly both for the student and the practitioner." This is a great feature of the book. The
Symptom index may be helpful in refining a diagnoses, but should not be a substitute for the
practitioner's own knowledge and ability to generate an appropriate Zang Fu diagnosis.
Similarly, the Treatment sections are not intended as a "cookbook" approach to treatment, but
rather as a broad outline of the range of commonly used herbal formulae and acupuncture
points that may be considered in the treatment of a particular condition. Final selection of the
most appropriate points or herbs must be based upon a thorough working knowledge of the
structure of Traditional Chinese Medicine as a whole. The Treatment sections provide a solid
starting point for selection of points and herbal formulas, and thus can assist a student in
either study or review. It is hoped that many OM schools will pick this up as a good textbook
for their TCM programs.

Almost half of the book is devoted to herb formulas, although the section is almost omitted in
the table of contents. Actually, the number of typos for a first printing is rather small, as the
quite short errata page attests. Formulae are listed by Pin Yin, with characters and English
name below. This is followed by 'also known as' then each constituent is listed in Latin and
Pin Yin, with dosage ranges and actions. These summaries of constituents seemed not so
much short as elegant. The formula's actions, syndromes, and clinical manifestations follow,
with sections on treats, modifications, and contraindications. The 'treats' section offers
tantalizing short hand glimpses into documented Western biomedical applications for each
herb formula, hinting at the proven clinical potential of our medicinals. Finally, the
'modifications' section was kept short , so as not to burden the text with undue length.

Taking an example, we find the practical skill of the authors at work. Let us look at GUI PI
TANG. In the 'Treats' Section it includes:

Neurasthenia Post-concussion syndrome Congestive heart disease

Anemia Allergic Purpura Functional Uterine Bleeding
Duodenal ulcer Menorrhagia Chronic Bleeding
Nervous Exhaustion Personality Disorders Myasthenia Gravis
Melancholy Thrombocytopenic purpura Chronic gonorrhea
Cervicitis Gastric Ulcer Aplastic anemia
Uterine cancer Supraventricular tachycardia

This list surely opens one's eyes to a wider range of modern therapeutic application for this
classic formula.

In the constituents for section for this same Restore the Spleen Decoction (Ginseng and Logan
Combination) we see Radix Codonopsis listed parenthetically as a substitute of Rx. Ginseng
at the appropriately expected dosing range of triple the weight. No mention is made of the
nuances of these medicinals and that there is a long-standing debate about whether Dang Shen
can ever really replace Ren Shen energetically. My herbal medicine mentor Dr. Lee taught us
that it can indeed do so in this particular formula, if need be. Such a nuance of discussion is
typically not in the style of this text. However, another parenthetical entry, Scl. Poria
Pararadicis is discussed as a possible replacement for Scl. Po ris Cococs. In this case, Fu
Shen's special differences from Fu Ling are concisely noted, allowing the practitioner the
option to improve the focus of the formulation.

This book can easily serve as a daily reference for most English speaking clinical practitioners
of TCM. The graphics are spare but handsome throughout. Especially worthwhile are the
'flow chart' type diagrams, which can be a great boon to students. It is a fine example of the
kind of texts we need in place for the field of Oriental Medicine to grow and mature into full
doctorate status.

"Zang Fu Syndromes:
Differential Diagnosis and Treatment"

James McNeill
Immediate Past President NZRA
"This big reference book has been a long time coming. John McDonald came to New Zealand
a couple years ago and gave some well-received lectures in Taupo on Shen Disturbances and a
unique presentation on Secret Ming Dynasty Needle Techniques. I and many of my colleagues
thoroughly enjoyed the seminar. John's dry wit and "tangential circumlocutions" result in a
great presentation style of important and valuable information. The subject matter of this book
is no less clinically important, in my opinion a defining work in the transfer of TCM to the
Western world.

This text was originally written for students and staff of colleges in Australia. The aim of this
towering work was to provide a learning tool for students and staff of other colleges and a
reference book for acupuncture/TCM practitioners. The major source was the Chinese text
Zang Fu Zheng Zhi (Study of Zang Fu Syndromes, 1980). The text was also designed to be
consistent with California acupuncture course work, so with the inclusion of co-author Joel
Penner it includes a comprehensive herbal text as well.

At almost 600 pages Zang Fu Syndromes is a big book. Before the age of political
correctness, some would say "man size book". Needless to say, I am impressed by the
practical and concise layout, graphics and flow charts. It is taken that the reader has a
fundamental knowledge of basic TCM theory (Zang Fu and Jing Luo function, theory of Qi
and blood, body fluids, eight principles etc.)

What strikes me is how the complexity of the information can be conveyed so effectively
through the chosen format. Divided into sections devoted to each of the five elements, each
syndrome follows generally the following line:

Predisposing Factors
Clinical Manifestations (including tongue and pulse)
Associated Western conditions
Differential Diagnosis
Treatment Principle
Common points
Common herbal formulae

In each of the element chapters is a fantastic flow chart which brings all the information
Joel Penner in conjunction with John McDonald, has done a great job structuring the herbal
formulae content; comprehensive yet concise. The herbal section of Zang Fu Syndromes takes
a little over half the content of the book. Again, the format is so user friendly you have to
make an effort to get it wrong. Formulas names in Pin Yin and English, individual herb
actions, contraindications, modifications; it's all here.
Worthy of note is the index section. It's brilliant! Included is a Pin yin formula index, English
formula index, Latin individual herb index, Pin Yin individual herb index, point index, and
tongue and pulse indexes.

In the words of David Legge (author of Close to the Bone) "Zang Fu Syndromes: Differential
Diagnosis and Treatment gives you the information you need---when you need it." This book
looks good on my desk!"

"Zang Fu Syndromes:
Differential Diagnosis and Treatment"

Harley P. Gale
Published in the Pacific Journal of Oriental Medicine, 1999

"At last the long awaited publication of a comprehensive clinical reference on the differential
diagnosis of Zang Fu syndromes and their treatment, with herbs and acupuncture, by John
McDonald and Joel Penner.

This book follows on from Jeremy Ross's 1984 publication: Zang Fu-the Organ Systems of
Traditional Chinese Medicine (Churchill Livingstone). The scope of Zang Fu Syndromes:
Differential Diagnosis and Treatment is, however, much broader with a clearer, more
clinically accessible, organization of information and treatment options, including Chinese
herbal medicine.

The syndromes are presented according to the five elements and at the beginning of each
element clear Xu-Shi, hot-cold diagrams differentiate the syndromes of each Zang and Fu.

Within the syndromes, the etiology includes predisposing and precipitating factors followed
by a clear list of clinical manifestations including tongue and pulse. A welcome addition is the
inclusion of complications, which describes syndromes leading to and/or developing from the
syndrome in question. Western conditions associated with the syndromes are listed.

I was particularly impressed with the differential diagnosis section of each syndrome, where
each is clearly differentiated by basic diagnosis according to the eight principles and six
impediments, from other similar syndromes.

Treatment options include acupuncture, with the functions of recommended points and
common herbal formulae, cross referenced by page number, to an extensive section on herbal
formulae at the conclusion of the section on syndrome differentiation.

Clear flow charts summarize the etiology, progression and complications involved for each
Zang and Fu, and at the conclusion of the section on individual Zang and Fu, eleven complex
syndromes, involving two Zang are described.

The index, at 241 pages, is a book in its own right. Herbal formulae are indexed according to
pin yin and English names and individual herbs according to Latin and pin yin names.

Comprehensive indexes for points, tongue, pulse and symptoms are provided.
Miki Shima commented that one does not need another book or dictionary to make this book
usable. I think this fairly sums up my opinion. I know that practitioners and students will find
it an invaluable clinical reference.

As Chris Zaslawski states, in his review of The Handbook of Internal Medicine, it is truly a
sign of maturation of our profession when Australian authors, like John McDonald (assisted
by Joel Penner), publish landmark works in the field of traditional Chinese medicine."

"Zang Fu Syndromes:
Differential Diagnosis and Treatment"

By Greg Bantik, L.Ac.

Published in Oriental Medicine (a Pacific College of Oriental Medicine publication)

With the publication of Zang Fu Syndromes: Differential Diagnosis we see another example
of the recent maturing process in our textbooks. Authors John McDonald and Joel Penner
have written a lengthy text on this important aspect of differential diagnosis in Chinese

The first chapters give lists of each organ and their major syndromes, along with the most
common combined syndromes. Each syndrome is discussed under the headings; etiology,
clinical manifestations, complications, associated Western conditions, differential diagnosis,
and treatment. These listings provide students with a good foundation on how to recognize
each syndrome, their common points of origin, how to distinguish them from others that are
similar, what are the common directions through which they develop, and what are some
common Western medical diagnoses given for the syndrome. The treatment section includes
lists of the common acupuncture points and their indications. Also included are the common
herbal formula prescribed for each syndrome.

The later part of the book includes several very detailed indexes that contribute significantly
to the book's usefulness as a textbook and clinical reference tool. For example, the herbal
formulas listed earlier under the syndrome are further explained. Details are given of doses
and functions of each individual herb, and how they act in combination, as well as the overall
actions of the formula and the syndromes for which the formula may be useful. Useful
indexes of the pin yin and English names of the formulas are included. Each individual herb is
indexed in the same way, and all of the formulas in which it is included are listed.

An index of all of the points in the text, their functions and the pages they are listed on
follows. The pulse and tongue qualities, and all the syndromes, in which they occur, are also
indexed. There is also a comprehensive symptom index, showing all the syndrome's any given
symptom may occur in. These indexes provide a valuable research and study feature...

I use Zang Fu Syndromes as a classroom text at Pacific College. Students appreciate it and
find it very useful. I have known John McDonald as a friend and colleague for many years,
and admire greatly his many contributions to our field. The book is a very useful textbook for
students learning how to make a differential diagnosis and for practitioners to use as a clinic

Book Blurbs
Drs. John McDonald and Joel Penner have done great work putting together essential
material for students of Traditional Chinese Medicine in Zang Fu Syndromes: Differential
Diagnosis and Treatment. The whole book is organized by the Five Phase energetics in a
very lucid manner and each element is discussed extremely well with herbal and acupuncture
information. It is also a very kind and user-friendly book in the sense that one does not need
another book or dictionary to make it usable. In other words, its got everything available for
each formula and syndrome. Besides all of those features, the index is an absolute gem. I
highly recommend this book, not only for students but also for professionals of Traditional
Chinese medicine as a companion on Zang Fu problems.

Miki Shima O.M.D., L.Ac.

Author of The Medical I Ching: Oracle of the Healer Within

The development of Acupuncture in the west has been dependent upon quality research and
translation from original Chinese sources by dedicated persons over several hundred years.
Drs. McDonald and Penner make a valuable contribution to this tradition by providing an
excellent text for teachers and students, and a more than useful reference for established

Peter Sherwood
Chairman, Australian College of Natural Medicine

Zang Fu is one of the primary methods of differential diagnosis in Tradional Chinese

Medicine. This text takes the practice of Zang Fu analysis to a new level.
It is important!

William R. Morris O.M.D., L.Ac.

Academic Dean, Emperors College of Traditional Oriental Medicine

This is one of the best reference books I own. Its on my desk and I use it daily... A must for
every practitioner and student.

David L. Katz O.M.D., L.Ac.

Private practice, North Hollywood, CA

This book is not only the most complete Zang Fu textbook on the market, but because of the
many useful features, it is an excellent clinic resource.

E. Douglas Kihn O.M.D., L.Ac.

Professor of Oriental Medicine, Emperors College of Traditional Oriental Medicine
How students in the past got along without this book is mystifying. I have found it to be not
only an essential book to have, but also one of the most used books in my library.

Stacey Small
Student, Yo San University of Oriental Medicine.

This is a book for every practitioners and students desk.

It gives you information you need - when you need it.

David Legge
Author of Close To The Bone