Felix Mann

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Felix Mann
Born10 April 1931
 Frankfurt/Main, Germany
Died2 October 2014(2014-10-02) (aged 83)
Shropshire, England
EducationMalvern College, Christ's College, Cambridge and Westminster Hospital
Occupation(s)Medical Doctor and Acupuncturist
Known forPublications and innovations in the field of acupuncture
SpouseRuth Csorba v. Borsa
ChildrenDr. Maria-Ruth Morello (stepdaughter)
Websitehttp://www.felixmann.co.uk (archived version)
  Felix Mann (10 April 1931 – 2 October 2014) was a German-born acupuncturist.[1]  He devised the system known as Scientific Acupuncture and was the founder and past president of the Medical Acupuncture Society (1959–1980). He was also the first president of the British Medical Acupuncture Society (1980), and the author of the first comprehensive English language acupuncture textbook Acupuncture: The Ancient Chinese Art of Healing first published in 1962. In 1995, he received The German Pain Prize. Mann, who was based in England, also lectured internationally on medical acupuncture.[2][3][4] Mann distanced himself from traditional beliefs in the existence of acupuncture points and meridians.[5]

Criticism of basic acupuncture concepts[edit]

Mann distanced himself from traditional beliefs in the existence of acupuncture points and meridians. He stated in his book Reinventing Acupuncture: A New Concept of Ancient Medicine:

"The traditional acupuncture points are no more real than the black spots a drunkard sees in front of his eyes." (p. 14)
"Many acupuncture points are in practice like McBurney’s point, in that both the position and size of the point vary enormously" (p. 14)

And regarding meridians…

"The meridians of acupuncture are no more real than the meridians of geography. If someone were to get a spade and tried to dig up the Greenwich meridian, he might end up in a lunatic asylum. Perhaps the same fate should await those doctors who believe in [acupuncture] meridians." (p. 31)

Regarding the whole meridian system:

"... the original, probably correct, observations were taken up by scholars who then processed something simple into something complicated, in their masterful, scholarly way. Possibly they wished the meridians in microcosm man to simulate the pathway of the planets in the celestial macrocosm and thus produced the truly amazing course of the meridians, coursing three times round the whole body.
"However, despite the fact that I criticise the present description of acupuncture points and meridians, it will be apparent that I could never have evolved my own ideas without the stimulus of the traditional structures." (p. 36)

New concepts[edit]

In his later years, Mann introduced some new acupuncture concepts he found important.

He regarded a significant part – perhaps as much as 50% of the patients – as strong reactors:

"These patients respond to acupuncture like magic. Their symptoms may be cured or alleviated within seconds or minutes of treatment, a treatment which involves only one or two needles and gentle stimulation." (p. 41)

Mann introduced a new acupuncture method that he regarded as stronger than traditional skin acupuncture: Periosteal acupuncture. (p. 91) This involves inserting the needles into the periosteum – almost all the way down to the bone.


  • Reinventing Acupuncture: A New Concept of Ancient Medicine: (1992) 1st edition, also in German and Italian; (1996) Revised 1st edition; (2000) 2nd edition.
  • Textbook of Acupuncture (1987) Omnibus
  • Scientific Aspects of Acupuncture (1977) 1st edition; (1982) 2nd edition, also in Japanese.
  • Acupuncture: Cure of Many Diseases (1971) 1st edition; (1972) Pan edition; (1972) USA edition; (1972) Revised edition, also in Spanish, Dutch, Finnish, German, Italian, Swedish; (1992) 2nd edition.
  • Atlas of Acupuncture (1966), 13 reprints
  • The Meridians of Acupuncture (1964), also in Italian
  • The Treatment of Disease by Acupuncture (1963); (1967) 2nd edition; (1974) 3rd edition
  • Acupuncture: The Ancient Chinese Art of Healing (1962); (1962) Revised; (1971) 2nd edition; (1973) Revised edition; (1981) 3rd edition; (1963) & (1972) USA editions, also in Italian


  1. ^ MacDonald, A. (2014). "Dr Felix Mann". Acupuncture in Medicine. 32 (6): 512–3. doi:10.1136/acupmed-2014-010711. PMID 25432960. S2CID 31385490.
  2. ^ Rensberger, Boyce (4 December 1971). "Acupuncture Is backed by British doctor". New York Times. Retrieved 8 November 2008. A British doctor who specializes in acupuncture stood before a packed auditorium at Brooklyn's Downstate Medical Center yesterday and explained how he, like the Chinese who originated the ancient healing art, sticks needles into his patients to cure them of dozens of afflictions. Speaking in soft, measured tones, Dr. Felix Mann...
  3. ^ See also Acupuncture is demonstrated at Chinese Medicine seminar, The New York Times, 23 July 1972; p. 45. "During clinical demonstrations of by Dr. Felix Mann of London and Dr. Nguyen van Nghi...."
  4. ^ United Press International (18 June 1972). "Interest in Chinese needle treatment growing in US". Rome News-Tribune. Retrieved 8 November 2008. The demonstration featured Dr. Felix Mann, whose busy London practice is devoted almost exclusively to acupuncture....
  5. ^ Mann, Felix (August 2006). "The Final Days of Traditional Beliefs? - Part One". Chinese Medicine Times. 1 (4). Archived from the original on 22 January 2009.

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