THE ACADEMIC ESSENCE OF PROFESSOR SHAOQIN ZHAO TRAINED BY IMPERIAL PHYSICIANS AND "DRIVE STAGNATION AWAY" Dr Song Clinic The Journal of Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture, Official Academic Journal of The Association of Traditional Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture UK, to be published in March 2018



This year (2018) is the 100th anniversary of the birth of the late Professor Shaoqin Zhao.  Professor Zhao was a leading authority in Chinese medicine techniques following three generations of Imperial Physicians in the Qing Dynasty in China: his father, grandfather and great-grandfather. We analysed Professor Shaoqin Zhao’s academic theories about febrile disease and internal medicine disease and examined 12 patients’ medical records of three doctors. The doctors were Professor Zhao himself plus two doctors heavily influenced by him: Professor Liukun Li who was taught by Professor Zhao and Dr Zhixiang Song who was taught by Professor Li.

The aim was to explore the academic essence of Professor Zhao’s Traditional Chinese Medicine theories. We wanted to commemorate Professor Zhao who made such a great contribution to bridging the gap between the old and new China and provided the basis of the education for many of today’s Chinese doctors.


An analysis of the academic theories of Professor Shaoqin Zhao regarding febrile disease:

  • take condition out of surface while the hot condition just stays at body surface;
  • take condition out of body while the hot condition remains inside;
  • take the condition out of body, even the hot condition inside interstitial fluid;
  • cool the hot ropy blood and make good circulation for blood to spread hot condition out of blood while the hot condition inside the blood.

An analysis of the Professor’s theories about hot mixed wet illness: make the wet to become  air being exhaled through lungs and skin first,  then the remaining  heat with wet condition is removed through  chest,  abdominal and  pelvic cavities by way of phlegm, stool and urine.

Identifying internal medical disease in two ways:

  • identification of energy on surface, energy inside, interstitial fluid and blood; and
  • identification of chest cavity and above, abdominal cavity, pelvic cavity and below.

Treating internal medical disease in three ways:

  • help energy-diffusing condition out from the surface and driving condition out through phlegm, stool and urine;
  • make good circulation for all body energy and blood;
  • make chest, abdominal and pelvic cavity work well with no stagnation block.

Every condition in the body is ‘Stagnation’ by Professor Zhao’s dialectical viewpoint.  ‘Open the ways of surface and inside the body, drive stagnation away, let energy and blood have good circulation’ is the key for treating any disease.

Patients’ medical records of the master Professor Zhao and two apprentices Liukun Li and Zhixiang Song show ‘Driving Away Stagnation’ is an effective treatment for patients.


‘Open the ways of the surface and inside the body, drive stagnation away, let energy and blood have good circulation’ is the academic essence of Professor Shaoqin Zhao. The treatment following this academic essence is most effective for patients.


Taking the febrile stagnation out of the body from the surface; making the wet stagnation steam out of the body from lungs; keeping the chest, abdominal and pelvic cavities working well to drive all stagnation out of the body all the time, are important ways to drive stagnation away. ‘Driving Stagnation Away’ is the academic essence of Professor Shaoqin Zhao for treating all conditions.

 Key words: Professor Shaoqin Zhao, Academic essence, Drive Stagnation Away