Tibetan medicine is based on the prolonged experience of exposure to
illnesses over the past 2,000 years. Ancient Tibetan men, such as the Zila
Garma Yade and Lhato Torab, expressed their theories of medicine and how it
affected society, but no definite discoveries were made.
During the unification of the Tibetan Plateau, fundamental principle began to take shape. These studies were put into the Four-Volume Medical Code. Medical classics began to be exchanged through the various marriages of the dynasties in control of Tibet. The earliest Tibetan work was by a Han monk named Mahayana and a Tibetan master translator named Vairocana. These individuals translated the Medicine Kong on Medical Treatment.
Yutog Nyingma Yundain Goinbo was the most accomplished Tibetan medical practitioner of the time of the Trisong Destan. He collected various folk remedies from Nepal to India. The Four-Volume Medical Code was based on Goinbo's research.
Tibetan medical schools began to form during the time of the 5th Dalai Lama. As the years went by, volumes and volumes of medical books were produced. These books contained information about medicinal herbs, bleeding therapy, and the way to deliver babies. Qenrab Norbu wrote numerous doctrines based on the classics, astronomy, and calendering.
Under the 13th Dalai Lama, the Lhasa Medical School was opened. Qenrab Norbu became the headmaster of this school. One thousand students from many regions came there to study medicine. The name of the school was changed in 1959 to The Tibetan Medicine Hospital.
All in all, Tibetan medicine has improved tremendously. It is advanced and yet traditional with the old folk remedies.