TCM Treatment of the Convalescent Stage of COVID-19
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Research on coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has focused on epidemiological and clinical characteristics of confirmed cases and patients discharged from hospital. Diagnosis and treatment protocols have been established for hospitalised patients. However, very little attention has been given to patients during the convalescent period. Although simplified treatment protocols using traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) have been proposed, they do not always accurately reflect the true clinical situation. The convalescent period of COVID-19 is extremely important since it influences the speed and extent of patients’ recovery, and whether they go on to develop ‘long COVID’. In TCM terms, incomplete recovery is commonly due to retention of pathogens such as dampness and toxic heat, obstruction of qi and blood, deficiency of Lung and Spleen qi, and deficiency of qi and yin. This article describes how to treat patients during the convalescent stage of COVID-19 with acupuncture and herbal medicine to bring them back to full health.
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