Herb Formulas Notebook

Can Shi Tang

Silkworm Droppings Decoction

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Source: Discussion of Sudden Turmoil Disorders (1862)
Author: Wang Shi-Xiong

Category: Formulas that Expel Dampness

Pattern: Damp-Heat type Sudden Turmoil Disorder

Key Symptoms: Abdominal or leg cramps, vomiting, diarrhoea, thirst, irritability, restlessness

Tongue: Thick, dry, yellow coating
Pulse: Soggy and rapid

Can Sha 9g
Yi Yi Ren 12g
Da Dou Huang Juan 12g
Mu Gua 9g
Huang Lian 6g (ginger fried)
Zhi Ban Xia 3g
Huang Qin 3g (wine fried)
Tong Cao 3g
Zhi Zi 6g
Wu Zhu Yu 2g (dry fried)

In the UK Can Sha must be substituted. The standard substitutions are Cang Er Zi and Fang Feng but Zi Su Ye seems more suitable than Cang Er Zi for its actions on harmonising the Stomach, stopping vomiting and releasing the exterior. If cramps are the major presentation (and this formula differs from Lian Po Yin primarily in focusing on cramps rather than vomiting) then it may be advisable to add Bai Shao and Gan Cao too.

Preparation: Decoction taken cold. Originally prepared with a mixture of spring water and boiled water (known as 'Yin Yang Water'), or spring water and loess soil ('earth syrup') which are said to facilitate the separation of clear and turbid but at present it is usually prepared with ordinary water.

Actions: Clears Heat, promotes the resolution of Dampness, causes the clear to ascend and directs the turbid downward.

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.