Traumatic stress or shock reaction is a psychological condition arising in response to a terrifying or traumatic event which induces an acute and strong emotional response, which may develop into a condition known as ‘PTSD’ (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder). The acute traumatic stress is defined by a ‘dissociative’ condition, with reduced perception and awareness, even coma. Later there will be a total or partial amnesia concerning the traumatic event. This article shows how this condition can be understood through an analysis of the Chinese medicine model of the psyche, and the way in which the functions of the Sinew Channels, the luo-Connecting Vessels and the Eight Extraordinary Meridians are modified by trauma, and how they can be used in treatment. Case histories clarify and illustrate this approach.