The tongue is typically moist and white, reflecting interior cold. Since cold is the predominating pathogenic factor in such patterns, pain is usually the most prominent symptom although numbness is quite common as well. Xiao Huo Luo Pian is a warming formula and dispersing formula, therefore it is contraindicated in cases of Yin deficiency, weak constitution and pregnancy.
Today, Xiao Huo Luo Pian may be used for certain biomedically defined disorders such as hemiplegia (one-sided paralysis), rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis with the appropriate TCM pattern presentation.
Xiao Huo Luo Pian is an important classical formula for releasing wind, cold and dampness from the body and restoring proper physiological function to the channels.
Xiao Huo Luo Pian is composed of six herbal medicinals which powerfully warm the channels, dispel wind-cold-dampness and alleviate pain. The chief herbs are Zhi Chuan Wu (prepared mother root of common monkshood) and Zhi Cao Wu (prepared wild monkshood root). Chuan Wu and Cao Wu are among the most effective herbs in the Chinese materia medica for warming the channels and dispersing cold and dampness. Studies involving Chuan Wu have shown marked anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects which may be even stronger than aspirin.1
Dan Nan Xing (Arisaema pulvis) is a deputy herb in this formula whose primary functions are in dispelling wind and dissolving phlegm. Dan Nan Xing is cool in nature and somewhat mitigates the hot nature of the other herbs in the formula.
The two assistant herbs Mo Yao (Myrrh) and Ru Xiang (Boswellia resin) invigorate the blood, relieve pain and increase flow in the meridians. Both herbs have scientifically demonstrated analgesic effects.2 Finally, Di Long (earthworm) opens the channels and extinguishes wind. Di Long is frequently found in formulas which address Bi / painful-obstruction syndrome as it is extremely effective at unblocking the meridians.
Together, these six medicinal herbs form Xiao Huo Luo Pian and are profoundly effective at relieving pain and numbness in cases with the appropriate clinical presentation. This is a warming and dispersing formula and is therefore contraindicated in cases of Yin deficiency, conditions aggravated by heat and/or constitutional weakness.
| Arisaema Cum Bile |
Radix Aconiti Carmichaeli Praeparata
Radix Aconiti Kusnezoffii Preparata
Resina Boswelliae Carterii
Resina Commiphorae Myrrhae
| (Dan Nan Xing) |
(Zhi Chuan Wu)
(Zhi Cao Wu)
The dose may be increased proportionally on body weight. Consult your practitioner for precise dosage recommendations on this and other factors.
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