Today, the applications of this formula have expanded to include many disorders due to fright or phlegm disturbing the Liver/Gallbladder system. The hallmark signs of this pattern are sensation of fullness in the chest, irritability, palpitations and signs of spirit disturbance. According to Chinese Medicine, the spirit (Shen) resides in the Heart. When the Heart is disturbed (as by fright or heat) it cannot reside peacefully and may 'float upwards' leading to insomnia, palpitations and delirium (as in hysteria, schizophrenia, and other mental-emotional conditions). Typically, this pattern presents with a rapid, wiry pulse and the tongue is red with a greasy coat.
Chai Hu Long Gu Mu Li Pian is a variation of Xiao Chai Hu Tang which deals with the lesser-Yang stage (Shao Yang) of disease. Chai Hu Long Gu Mu Li Pian goes further to address all three Yang stages, including the greater-Yang (Tai Yang) and Yang-brightness (Yang Ming). The formula is composed of eleven medicinal herbs which address each of the three Yang stages and their respective meridians.
Gui Zhi (Cinnamon) is a chief herb in the formula used to resolve the Tai Yang, which is the most exterior of the three stages. Gui Zhi promotes the flow of Yang Qi (energy) which helps relieve the sensation of heavieness in the chest and body. The chief herbs Chai Hu (Bupleurum) and Huang Qin (Scutellaria) work on the Shao Yang stage to cool and regulate the Gallbladder and Liver, promote the proper movement of Qi, release pathogenic influences and resolve phlegm. The final chief herb in the formula, Da Huang (Rhubarb root) addresses symptoms of Yang Ming stage disorder by purging heat, clearing dampness, relieving constipation and arresting delirious speech.
The assistant group of herbs includes Long Gu (Dragon bone) and Mu Li (Oyster shell) which are heavy mineral substances which anchor and subdue Liver Yang and the floating spirit. Long Gu and Mu Li showed 78.5% effectiveness in a study on the treatment of schizophrenia.1 Combined with Ren Shen (Ginseng) and Fu Ling (Poria), the assistant group protects the Spleen Qi, promotes urination and calms the spirit. Zhi Ban Xia (Prepared Pinellia) also has a descending action and works with Fu Ling, Chai Hu and Huang Qin to resolve phlegm in the Shao Yang stage.
Chai Hu Long Gu Mu Li Pian is a complex formula containing an elegant combination of herbs that are both warm and cold, ascending and descending. Great care should be exercised in pattern diagnosis and differentiation when prescribing this formula.
| Radix Bupleuri Chinensis |
Sclerotium Poriae Cocos
Radix Scutellariae Baicalensis
Ramulus Cinnamomi Cassiae
Rhizoma Pinelliae Ternatae
Radix Et Rhizoma Rhei
Rhizoma Zingiberis Officinalis Recens
| (Chai Hu) |
(Zhi Ban Xia)
The dose may be doubled for a quicker and stronger response as needed (e. g., in an acute phase). Consult your practitioner for precise dosage recommendations based on body weight and other factors.
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