Herb Formulas Notebook

She Gan Ma Huang Tang

Belamcanda and Ephedra Decoction

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Source: Essentials from the Golden Cabinet (c. 220)
Author: Zhang Ji / Zhong-Jing

Category: Formulas that Release Exterior-Interior Excess

Pattern: Taiyin Phlegm retention with reversed flow of Lung Qi

Key Symptoms: Excessive coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath with profuse clear watery sputum, rattling sounds in the throat, a feeling of fullness and stifling sensation in the chest and diaphragm, heaviness and pain of the body, swollen face and extremities

Tongue: White, slippery coating

Ma Huang 9-12g
She Gan 6-9g
Xi Xin 3-9g
Zi Wan 6-9g
Kuan Dong Hua 6-9g
Ban Xia 9g
Wu Wei Zi 3g
Sheng Jiang 9-12g
Da Zao 3-7pc

In the UK several of the herbs in this formula are restricted:
Ma Huang is limited to 1.8g daily and 0.6g per dose. It may be supplemented or substituted with Zi Su Ye, Jing Jie and Fang Feng.
Xi Xin faces a voluntary ban by the RCHM and is generally replaced with Zi Su Ye and Bai Qian for Lung disorders.
Kuan Dong Hua has been banned to the levels of pyrrolizidine alkaloids. It is probably best replaced with Jie Geng and a high dose of Zi Wan.

Preparation: Decoction.

Actions: Clears the Lung and dispels Phlegm, directs Lung Qi downwards and stops coughing.

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.