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Neither cholesterol nor hypercholesteremia exist as entities in traditional Chinese medicine. Nor, given that hypercholesteremia can be asymptomatic, is it necessarily easy to make a diagnosis and pattern differentiation. In order to understand hypercholesteremia better in terms of Chinese medicine, this article works forward from the known aetiology of hypercholesteremia and backwards from a. those disease processes that hypercholesteremia can precipitate, b. the nature of Chinese herbal substances that have been demonstrated to reduce cholesterol, and c. the actions and side‑effects of Western medical drugs used to treat hypercholesteremia. Five major treatment strategies based on differentiation of patterns are offered along with herbal prescriptions and acupuncture.
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