Theory

Sheng Ma Black Cohosh Rhizome, Bugbane Rhizome - Chinese Herbal Medicine


Sheng Ma Names

  • English Name: Black Cohosh Rhizome, Bugbane Rhizome
  • Pinyin Name: Sheng Ma

Sheng Ma Image

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Sheng Ma Cautions


    Contraindication Notes:

    • Avoid in cases of yin-deficient heat, upper-excesses and lower deficiencies.
    • Avoid with fully erupted measles.
    • Avoid in patients with breathing difficulties.


Sheng Ma Clinical Usages and Indications

  • Releases the exterior, vents muscles - accelerates the early stages of skin rashes, headache from wind-heat (forehead - stomach channel).
  • Clears heat, relieves toxicity - toxins in the upper or superficial areas, swelling, painful, sore gums, lips, and/or throat.
  • Raises yang, lifts spleen qi sinking (strong than Ge Gen) - for middle qi deficiency leading to shortness of breath, fatigue, prolapse of stomach, uterus, or rectum.
  • Serves to guide other herbs upwards.


Sheng Ma Dosage and Prep Notes

  • Dosage: 1.5-9g
  • Use honey-roasted version for collapsed conditions.




Clinician Notes


Sheng Ma Appears In 5 Formulas

Bu Zhong Yi Qi Wan

  • Tonify the Middle and Augment the Qi Formula
    • Coldness of the limbs, borborygmus with loose stools or diarrhea due to spleen yang deficiency.
    • Spontaneous or easy sweating, general fatigue, changes in appetite due to spleen qi deficiency.
    • Pale complexion and preference for warm food or drinks due to spleen yang and qi deficiency.
    • Shortness of breath and noticable lack of desire to speak may present if both spleen and stomach qi are weak.
    • This formula is also commonly used for prolasped organs.
  • Tonify
  • Tonify the Qi
  • Cautions
    • Use with caution for yin deficient patients.

Qing Shu Yi Qi Tang Wan

  • Clear Summer Heat and Augment the Qi
    • Please note that there are two formulas with the same name but slightly different compositions.  One is from Wang's Wen Re Jing Wei and tonifies the yin more strongly, the other (which is the one discussed here) is from Li's Pi Wei Lun (Discussion of the Spleen and Stomach) and tonifies the spleen more strongly.  Both have similar usages but are not directly interchangeable.  
    • Clears summerheat and dries dampness - summer colds and flus, heatstroke - fever, fatigue, excessive sweating with loose stools and heaviness in the body.
    • Along with respiratory infections in the right cases certain types of asthma may be appropriate for this formula.
    • Dampheat related inflammatory condtions such as Colitis are approprirate with the right underlying factors.
    • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome with symptoms of spleen deficiency and heat.
    • Wtih the right underlying factors the range of perimenopausal symptoms may be appropriate - low libido, fatigue, water retention, fibroids, heavy cycles.  Where this appear with spleen qi deficiency signs and kidney weakness, this formula may be appropriate.
  • Clear Heat
  • Relieve Summerheat

Xin Yi Qing Fei Wan

  • Magnolia Flower Drink To Clear The Lungs
    • Colds and/or allergies with heat signs (yellow mucus and/or fever, etc.).
    • Chronic sinus congestions / issues, chronic sinusitis, chronic rhinitis, loss of smell.
    • Nasal polyps with the right underlying factors.
    • Difficult to resolve sinus issues with thick, sticky mucus.
    • Headaches from sinus congestion.
  • Release the Exterior
  • Release Exterior Disorders with Head and Neck Symptoms
  • Cautions
    • May not be appropriate with heat signs from lung yin deficiency.

Xin Yi Wan

Yi Zi Wan

  • Decoction B
    • Hemorrhoids and/or constipation from an accumulation of damp-heat and toxins in the lower jiao - possibly bleeding hemorrhoids, pain, rectal prolapse, anal itching.
    • With the right underlying factors may also be useful for vaginal bleeding with abdominal pain, possibly with dark clots.
  • Clear Heat
  • Clear Heat and Relieve Toxicity



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