The Shanghan Lun (simplified Chinese: 伤寒论; traditional Chinese: 傷寒論; pinyin: Shānghán lùn) or Shanghan Zabing Lun (simplified Chinese: 伤寒杂病论; traditional Chinese: 傷寒雜病論; pinyin: Shānghán zábìng lùn), known in English as the Treatise on Cold Damage Disorders or the Treatise on Cold Injury, is a Chinese medical treatise that was compiled by Zhang Zhongjing sometime before the year 220, at the end of the Han dynasty. It is amongst the oldest complete clinical textbooks in the world (cf. Carakasaṃhitā and the Hippocratic Corpus), and one of the four canonical works that students must study in traditional Chinese medical education today.
The Shanghan Lun has 398 sections with 113 herbal prescriptions, organised into the Six Divisions corresponding to the six stages of disease:
Stages of disease
Tai Yang (太陽, greater yang): a milder stage with external symptoms of chills, fevers, stiffness, and headache. Therapy: sweating.
Yang ming (陽明, yang brightness): a more severe internal excess yang condition with fever without chills, distended abdomen, and constipation. Therapy: cooling and eliminating.
Shao yang (少陽, lesser yang): half outside, half inside half excess and half deficiency with chest discomfort, alternating chills, and fever. Therapy: harmonizing.
Tai yin (太陰, greater yin): chills, distended abdomen with occasional pain. Therapy: warming with supplementing.
Shao yin (少陰, lesser yin): weak pulse, anxiety, drowsiness, diarrhea, chills, cold extremities. Therapy: warming with supplementing.
Jue yin (厥陰, absolute yin): thirst, difficult urination, physical collapse. Therapy: warming with supplementing.
- Shang Han Lun (On Cold Damage), Translation & Commentaries by Zhongjing Zhang, Feng Ye, Nigel Wiseman, Craig Mitchell, Ye Feng. Paradigm Press 2000