Traditional Medicine, Modern Medicine and Complementary Medicine

10.1 Traditional Medicine, Modern Medicine and Complementary Medicine
  Traditional medicine Modern medicine Complementary medicine
Explanation A medical treatment that uses plants, animals and natural substances that are specifically applied or combined for diagnosis and treatment of disease The combination of the art of medicine in various field of science that relate to health science and biomedical

Various methods of health care that originates from many cultural background

  • natural product
  • Mind
  • Body practices
  • Effectivenness of the treatment is slow and takes time
  • Treatment using natural substances from plants and animals
  • Low treatment cost
  • Effectiveness proven with experience
  • Inherited and practised from generation to generation
  • Treatment uses synthetic medicine
  • High treatment cost
  • Clinically test
  • Using modern methods such as surgery, laser treatment and radiotherapy
  • Treatment effective and fast
  • Does not involve surgery and stitches on body
  • Considers the views of modern and traditional medical practitioners
  • Does not use medicine, drug and synthetic chemical substances

2. Medicines used in traditional, modern and complementary medicine

(a) Traditional medicine

Medicine Uses
Aloe vera
  • To reduce pain due to sunburn or exposure to hot objects
  • To maintain good health
  • To relieves swelling, bodily pain and bloadtedness
Hibiscus plant
  • To relieve headache
  • To prevent hair loss
  • To make medicine for malaria
2. Modern medicine
Medicine Uses Examples
  • To relieves pain
  • Aspirin
  • Paracetamol
  • Codeine
  • To kill or inhibit the growth of infectious bacteria
  • Penicillin 
  • Streptomycin
  • To treat psychiatric patients
  • Stimulants
  • Antidepressants
  • Antipsychotics
3. Complementary medicine
Medicine Uses
  • To relieve pain
  • Effective for back and neck pain, joint pain, headaches and sport injuries
Traditional massage
  • Soothes anxiety, pain, fatigue, muscle tension and nerve problems
  • To strengthen the body;s immunity against infectious disease
Herbal therapy
  • To cure diseases
4. Man-made medicines and medicines from natural resources
Man-made medicines Medicines from natural resources
Made in the lab and commercialised for the use of consumers Derived from plants and animals
Must be taken regularly or stopped when the sickness has healed Must be taken or used continuously for a long time to be effective
Evidence of healing is based on clinical test Evidence of healing by trust and past experiences

There is risk of side effect if 

  • used without the advice of a doctor
  • the patient does not follow the correct dosage

There is a risk of side effect if

  • used without the advice of a doctor
  • the patient does not follow the correct dosage
Vitamin C as pills in pharmacies Vitamin C from fruits

5. The effect of misuse of medicine

  • Causes death
  • Causes the medication to be less effective 
  • Causes severe side effects
  • Cause addition