Herb Formulas Notebook

Ma Huang Xing Ren Yi Yi Gan Cao Tang

(Ephedra, Apricot Kernal, Coicis and Licorice Decoction)

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Source: Discussion of Cold Damage (c. 220)
Author: Zhang Ji / Zhong-Jing

Category: Formulas that Release the Exterior

Pattern: Externally contracted Wind-Dampness

Key Symptoms: Mild generalised body aches, slight aversion to drafts, fever that worsens in the afternoon.

Ma Huang 1.5g
Xing Ren 3g
Yi Yi Ren 1.5g
Gan Cao 3g

The low doses in this formula indicate a mild pattern. For more severe presentations individual herbs may be increased. Since Ma Huang is below the legal limit of 1.8g per day and a maximum dose of 0.6g per administration this does not need to be substituted but if it is to be increased it must be done with other warm exterior releasing herbs like Zi Su Ye, Jing Jie and Fang Feng.

Preparation: Decoction.

Actions: Releases the Exterior and dispels Wind-Dampness

In order to mitigate the agitation causing effects of Ma Huang it may be fried in honey first and when decocted the froth removed from the surface with a spoon.

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These pages are intended to assist clinicians and are not intended for self-diagnosis or treatment for which a qualified professional should be consulted.