Herb Formulas Notebook

Niu Huang Cheng Qi Tang

Ox Gallstone Decoction to Order the Qi

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Source: Systematic Differentiation of Warm Pathogen Diseases (1798)
Author: Wu Tang / Ju-Tong

Category: Formulas that Open the Sensory Orifices

Pattern: Heat in the Pericardium due to Warm Disease with concurrent Yangming organ disorder

Key Symptoms: Delirious speech and loss of consciousness, constipation and thirst

Tongue: Parched and red or scarlet
Pulse: Rapid

Niu Huang 30g
Shui Niu Jiao 60g (originally Xi Jiao)
She Xiang 7.5g
Huang Lian 30g
Huang Qin 30g
Zhi Zi 30g
Bing Pian 7.5g
Yu Jin 30g
Zhen Zhu 15g
Xiong Huang 30g
Zhu Sha 30g
Da Huang 9g (powdered added at end)

In the UK the following substitutions are necessary:

Niu Huang == Huang Lian + Gou Teng + Tian Zhu Huang
Shui Niu Jiao == Xuan Shen + Huang Lian (3:1 ratio)
She Xiang == Shi Chang Pu + Ru Xiang
Zhen Zhu == Hu Po + Fu Shen

Xiong Huang and Zhu Sha are no longer used due to their heavy metal content but Mo Yao, Dan Shen and Yuan Zhi might make suitable further additions that will cool and move Blood, aromatically open the orifices and dispel Phlegm, especially if the amount of Huang Lian seems to be growing out of control with the standard substitutions.

Preparation: All but the last ingredient are ground into powder and and formed into 3g pills with honey. Two pills are then dissolved in water with 9g of powdered Da Huang. Take one half of the mixture first, then take the second half if there is no effect.

Actions: Clears Heat, resolves toxicity, dislodges Phlegm, opens the sensory orifices and the bowels, calms the Shen

Contraindications: Pregnancy, Cold-type closed disorders or long term use. It should be discontinued once the desired effect is achieved

Research Links:
Science Direct
Google Scholar
Journal of Chinese Medicine
American Dragon

Reference Notes: (click to display)

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