Introduction of Yu Xing Cao:Heartleaf Houttuynia Herb or Herba Houttuyniae.

TCM Herbalism:Medicinals and Classifications. ✵The article gives records of the herb Heartleaf Houttuynia Herb, its English name, Latin name, property and flavor, its botanical source one plant species, ①.Houttuynia cordata Thunb., with a detailed introduction to the botanical features of this plant species, the growth characteristics, and ecological environment of this plant species, the features of the herb Heartleaf Houttuynia Herb, its pharmacological actions, medicinal efficacy, and administration guide.

Herba Houttuyniae(Heartleaf Houttuynia Herb).

Herba Houttuyniae:fresh root Pin Yin Name: Yú Xīnɡ Cǎo.
 English Name: Heartleaf Houttuynia Herb.
 Latin Name: Herba Houttuyniae.
 Property and flavor: slightly cold, pungent.

 Brief introduction: The herb Herba Houttuyniae is the dried aerial part of Houttuynia cordata Thunb.(family Saururaceae), used to clear heat, counteract toxins, evacuate pus and relieve stranguria for the lung abscess with purulent expectoration, cough in cases of lung heat, boils and sores, damp-heat stranguria, and acute dysentery. It is commonly known as Yú Xīnɡ Cǎo, Heartleaf Houttuymia Herb, Herb of Heartleaf Houttuynia.

 Houttuynia cordata Thunb.:shrubs Botanical source: Common herbal classics and official herbal classics defined the herb Herba Houttuyniae(Heartleaf Houttuynia Herb) as the dried aerial part of (1). Houttuynia cordata Thunb. It is a plant of the Houttuynia Thunb. Genus, Saururaceae family, Piperales order plant. This commonly used species is introduced as:

(1).Houttuynia cordata Thunb.


 Houttuynia cordata Thunb.:drawing of plant Botanical description: It is commonly known as Jí Cài. Herbs with perennial odor, 60 cm tall. Stem lower flat, subtubercular whorls rootlets, upper erect, glabrous or subtubercular hairy. Leaves alternate, thinly papery, glandular; Petiole 1~4 cm long; Stipules membranous, striate, ca. 2.5 cm long, lower part united with petiole into leaf sheath, base enlarged, slightly clasped. Leaf-blade ovate or broadly ovate, 4~10 cm long, 3~6 cm wide, apex shortly acuminate, base cordate, entire, green above, often purplish-red below, veins on both sides pilose. Inflorescences spike on top of stem, ca. 2 cm long, ca. 5 mm wide, opposite to leaves; 4 involucral bracts, oblong or obovate, 1~1.5 cm long, ca. 0.6 cm wide, white; Flowers small and dense, no perianth; 3 stamens, filaments 3 times as long as anthers, lower part united with ovary; 1 pistil, consisting of 3 carpels, ovary superior, 3 styles, detached. Capsule ovoid, 2~3 cm long, apex dehiscent, with persistent style. Seeds numerous, ovate. It is flowering from May to June, fruiting from October to November.

 Houttuynia cordata Thunb.:flowering plant Ecological environment: the Houttuynia cordata grows in gullies, damp places or near water, streams, and moist area woods. The plant mainly distributes in the northwest, north, central and south areas of the Yangtze River. It is mainly produced in provinces of the Yangtze River, the Zhujiang river area, and the northwest of China.

 Growth characteristics: The plant Houttuynia cordata Thunb grows wild in wet or waterside lowland, it prefers a warm and humid environment, avoid drought. Cold resistance, afraid of strong light, can pass winter at -15℃. It grows best in rich sandy loam and humus loam, but clay and alkaline soil are not suitable for cultivation.

 Houttuynia cordata Thunb.:fresh herb with root Characters of herbs: Fresh Heartleaf Houttuynia Herb: The stem is cylindrical, shrinking and bending, with a length of 20~30 cm or 20~45 cm and a diameter of 0.25~0.45 cm; The upper part is green or purple-red, the lower part is white, the nodes are obvious, and the lower nodes have fibrous roots, no hair or sparse hair. Leaves are alternate, heart-shaped, 3 ~ 10 cm long and 3 ~ 11 cm wide; the apex is taper, with whole edge; The upper surface is green with dense glandular spots, and the lower surface is often purple-red; The petiole is slender, the base and stipules(peraphyllum) combine to form a sheath. The spike is terminal(grows on the top). It has a fishy smell and tastes puckery. The herb which has more leaves, green color, with flower spikes and strong fishy smell is better.

 Dry Heartleaf Houttuynia Herb: The stem is flat cylindrical, twisted, the surface is yellow-brown, with several strigations, obvious nodes, there are fibrous roots remaining at the lower nodes; the texture of the herb is crisp and easily broken. The leaves are alternate, the leaves are curled and shrunk, they are heart-shaped after flattening, the upper surface is dark yellow-green to dark brown, the back surface is gray-green or gray-brown. The spikes are yellow-brown.

 Herba Houttuyniae:dried herb Pharmacological actions: ①.inhibitory effect on staphylococcus aureus, diplococcus pneumoniae, mycobacterium tuberculosis, bacillus dysentery, and leptospirosis; ②.preventive effect on virus infection in mice; ③.significantly promote the phagocytosis of leukocytes and macrophages and has an anti-inflammatory effect; ④.Quercitin has a diuretic effect; ⑤.antitussive and antiasthmatic effects of houttuynia oil are obvious.

 Medicinal efficacy: Clear heat and detoxification, elimination carbuncle and discharge pus, prompt diuresis and treating stranguria, prompt diuresis and reduce swelling. It is indicated for abscess of lung and pyemesis(spitting pus), pneumonia, lung abscess, phlegm heat and asthma cough, pyretic stranguria, malaria, carbuncle sore and ulcer, hemorrhoids, edema, gonorrhea, leucorrhea, rectocele, eczema, favus of the scalp, scabies, etc.

 Administration of Herba Houttuyniae(Yú Xīnɡ Cǎo): 
 
Reference: Administration Guide of Herba Houttuyniae(Yú Xīnɡ Cǎo)
TCM Books: ①.Internally:15~25 grams,should not decoct for long time,fresh herb double dosage,water decoction or extract juice and take.Externally:proper amount,mashed and apply stick,or fumigation wash the affected area with water decoction;②.Internally:water decoction, 3~5 qian(about 9~15 grams),fresh herb 1~2 liang(about 30~60 grams),or extract juice.Externally:fumigation wash with water decoction,or mashed and apply stick;③.Internally:water decoction, 15~25 grams,should not decoct for long time, or double dosage,extract juice from fresh herb.Externally:proper amount, mashed and apply stick,or fumigation wash with water decoction.

 
Herbs Clearing Heat and Counteracting Toxins.

 Introduction: Herbs Clearing Heat and Counteracting Toxins: an agent or substance herbs that counteracts heat toxins or fire toxins, mainly indicated in the treatment of boils, sores, abscess, erysipelas, epidemic infectious diseases, mumps, dysentery, insect or snake bite, and burns.
 
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References:
  • 1.Introduction of Yu Xing Cao:Heartleaf Houttuynia Herb or Herba Houttuyniae.

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