Formal representation of acupuncture : concept, theory and logic

Gao, Y 2010, Formal representation of acupuncture : concept, theory and logic , PhD thesis, University of Salford.

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This research investigates the development of a single acupuncture ontology which can represent knowledge from two distinct perspectives, i.e., those of so-called orthodox or Western medicine and those of Chinese medicine. Acupuncture, initially a treatment from ancient Chinese medicine, has been widely adopted by increasing numbers of practitioners of orthodox medicine. However the differences between the two traditions make it difficult to exchange knowledge and to compare findings. With a view to facilitate knowledge sharing, this thesis explores how heterogeneous types of acupuncture knowledge and information can be represented in a single ontology. The purpose of such an ontology is to provide a consistent representation of acupuncture across the different paradigms. An ontology for acupuncture was conceptualised using the flexible sets of distinctions based on Sowa's distinction approach, and constructed using description logic technologies. To assess the contribution of the acupuncture ontology, evaluation was carried out by experts from two disciplines, i.e., from medical informatics and from health care, and with respect to three applications, i.e., ontology editing tool, ontology browser with choices of perspectives, and web ontology query application. The data collection methods comprised observation and interviews, coupled with video recording and screen capture. The video and transcripts were analysed and coded with software designed for supporting qualitative research. The outcome of the evaluations concluded that the research had achieved its aim, i.e., to formally represent the concept, theory and logic of acupuncture from distinct paradigms of both orthodox and Chinese medicine in a single ontology. It succeeded in making implicit relationships in acupuncture knowledge explicit at concept level, instance level and meta level across the two paradigms.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Contributors: Kay, S (Supervisor)
Schools: Schools > School of Health Sciences
Depositing User: Institutional Repository
Date Deposited: 03 Oct 2012 13:34
Last Modified: 04 Aug 2022 11:26

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