A 26 year-old girl had a flu and was experiencing some fever and chills. She was extremely weak and tired. She described that she didn't have any strength to dress herself. She was bed-ridden for 2 whole days. On the third day, she was finally able to get out of bed and come to see me. Upon further inquiries I found out that she had experience dizziness, nausea, lower back pain, and painful tonsil. Her pulse was deep. In layman's term, the flu virus has already invaded her kidneys. I prescribed 3 and half days of medication and thinking that she would need more. A few days later, she reported back that she was a lot better after 1 day, and back to normal after the 2nd day.
Chinese medicine isn't about killing virus or bacteria. If you check the ingredient of the herbal medicine, there probably isn't any single ingredient can kill virus or bacteria. Why does it work? This is because Chinese medicine is about changing the environment in your body. For example, if this flu virus likes living in a cold and moist environment where they can reproduce the fastest, with the medicine, we can raise the temperature and reduce the moisture, they will not be able to reproduce as easily or as quickly. Eventually, most of them will die. And then your own immune system can take care of the rest.
The thing about Chinese medicine, it's custom made to the patient's presenting symptoms. If the girl's symptoms changed drastically before she recovered, then the original medicine wouldn't continue to work. The better the match of the formula to the patient, the quicker the recovery of the patient.