Father of Tibetan Medicine
So-Rig: Science of Healing

Yuthog Center for Natural Health Care

Devoted to the study and practice of Tibetan Medicine

overviewclinicdoctorsfor patientsweb pages

Preserving  and Exploring
the Healing Wisdom of Tibet

"Some medical traditions focus on material causes of illness and material treatments; other traditions insist on the importance of psychological and spiritual causes and remedies. Various types of conflicts between these two approaches are common. In contrast, Tibetan culture maintains a deep and powerful integration of  spiritual and practical understanding, and the Tibetan healing tradition respects both of these aspects of human nature and their potential for supporting health and healing."

The spiritual side of the Tibetan healing traditions is now well represented in the Western world. The Yuthog ("you-tock") center aims to help fill in the other side of the picture. Named for the scholar and healer Yuthog, who is known as the father of Tibetan medicine, Yuthog Center will be a resource for learning, health care and research.

Our living spiritual guide is Ogyen Tulku.

Health Care -- If you wish to explore Tibetan medicine as an option for your own health care, by working with a Tibetan physician, please look below at the section on our Clinic in Springfield, MA.

Learning -- We hope to one day offer training in Tibetan medical theory, practice and research. Already our educational affiliate, Dharma Haven, offers a growing array of Web pages on the physical, psychological and spiritual aspects of the healing traditions of Tibet. For those interested specifically in Tibetan medicine, good place to start might be our page titled

Introduction to Tibetan Medicine

For a links to all our other pages that are directly related to health and healing from the perspective of Tibetan culture, look at the Web Resources section, later on this page.

Research -- In the realm of research, we have two main interests: We want to work on extending the Tibetan pharmacopea to include herbs that were not available in Tibet, and we will gladly cooperate in evaluation studies that respect the integrity of traditional Tibetan medical systems of diagnosis and treatment.

Whatever your reason for being here, please enjoy your visit with us.

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Tibetan Medicine in Springfield, Massachusetts


Our physicians prefer to see someone in person at least twice -- with the second visit following a two-week period of taking the medicine prescribed -- to make sure that the prescription is producing the desired effect. (If no medicine is needed, no second visit is needed.) If visits to the clinic in Springfield are difficult, changes in the medication can sometimes be discussed by phone. 

Our doctors are happy to collaborate with Western physicians and therapists.

If you want to learn more you could start with our Web pages about various aspects of Tibetan medicine. However, if you just want a good overview of what's involved in working with a Tibetan physician, we recommend this article:

Elliot Tokar on Tibetan Medical Practice

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Dr. Jamyang Gyatso is an eighth-generation Tibetan physician, who began his studies of Tibetan methods of physical and spiritual healing with his family. His formal education led him to Ngagyur Nyingma Institute, where he graduated with dignity after nine years studying Buddhist philosophy, and then went on for further studies in medicine. Graduating at the top of his class from Men-Tse-Khang, he then persued advanced studies with the personal physicians of H.H. The Dalai Lama. Before coming to the U.S. he served for eight years as Chief Medical Officer at four different Tibetan medical centers in India. He was a representative at the International Congress on Alternative Medicine in 1998, and was awarded silver and gold medals, in 1996 and 1998, by the Board of Alternative Medicine in India for his work with cancer patients.

Nowadays he is teaching and consulting on mind, body and spirit in
conjunction with Tibetan medicine. He says "The treatment is
not only physical. It is very important to consider inner mind and 

Dr. Norzom Gyatso completed the full seven-year Tibetan medical training at Men-Tse-Khang before coming to the United States. She has been providing Tibetan medical diagnosis and treatment here for seven years. In addition to her training and experience, she brings to the practice a special rapport with women patients and children, and an excellent command of the English language.

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Guidelines for Patients 
In general, Tibetan medicine can be very effective in stopping the progression of many types of diseases and various sorts of psychological disturbances. However, it is impossible to be sure about any particular case before performing a diagnosis, in person -- and then seeing how the individual responds to the medicine and finding out if they are able make the recommended changes in diet and habitual behavior or life style.

Because in-person diagnosis and follow up are so important, we will gladly recommend a Tibetan physician who lives closer to the patient.
You can begin by looking at our listing of Tibetan Medical Clinics.

Second, the patient can begin right away trying to improve the diet and to moderate habitual patterns of harmful behavior. Tibetan physicians generally consider working toward appropriate diet and behavior to be more important than herbal medicines and other treatments. Specifically, the doctor will probably ask you to cut out excessive consumption of alcohol and probably to reduce or eliminate coffee and tobacco, and possibly to reduce the fat and sugar in your diet, and you can get started on this right away. Also, it would be helpful to reduce involvement in stressful situations, especially chronic ones, and make sure to get enough rest. For more information on these and other recommendations see our page Tibetan Traditional Self Care.

If the patient is interested working with the spiritual aspect of the healing practice, learning to do the Medicine Buddha Meditation, or some other healing meditation would be very good. Also, family members or friends can do the meditation with the patient, or do it for them if you are not living nearby. For more information see our page Tibetan Healing Meditation.

Before the First Visit

Traditionally, on the day before the consultation the patient should eat or drink neither too much nor too little, and the food should be easy to digest -- not much raw or cold food, or very sweet or very greasy or very spicy food; the consumption of alcohol, coffee, tobacco and drugs should be omitted if possible. Likewise it helps to avoid strenuous physical exercise, and to make sure to get enough sleep. The purpose of all these guidelines is to help the doctor get a deep understanding of your health, unclouded by superficial disturbances.

If you could write down any symptoms or health problems that you have noticed, that might help you to remember them during the consultation.

Before going to sleep on the night before the appointment, prepare a clean glass jar with no label and a lid that doesn't leak. Collect a sample of the first urine after about 3 AM and bring it with you. It is best to try to catch the middle part of the stream -- let the urine flow for a few seconds before catching the sample, and stop collecting the urine before the end of the flow. A sample of 4 to 8 ounces in volume would be ideal.

Please don't eat anything or drink anything but water for one hour before the appointment, and give yourself time to relax after you get here, before the time of the appointment -- in other words, come early. The pulse analysis is more informative for the doctor after you have settled down. If you are driving across town, 15 minutes may be enough but if you are coming in on the train from New York, try to be here at least 30 minutes before your appointment. If you are coming from a long distance, involving more than three or four hours of travel, try to spend the night before your appointment here in Springfield. 

Working with the Medicine

Explanations Concerning the Use of Tibetan Medicine

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Web Resources 
Our Tibetan Medicine pages on the Dharma Haven Web site are ranked among the most extensive and accurate sources of information on Tibetan Medicine on the Internet. The main pages are listed here:

Medicine Buddha

Tibetan Healing Meditation

Tibetan Medicine Home Page

Introduction to Tibetan Medicine

Tibetan Medicine Links and Resources

Tibetan Medicine Clinics and Pharmacies

Books and Videos on Tibetan Medicine

Tibetan Traditional Self Care

Tibetan Budhist Centers

Health Haven

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Your Comments and Suggestions

Contacting Dharma Haven

Revised on December 23, 2012

Copyright © 2012 Dharma Haven
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