Introduction of Hu Huang Lian:Figwortflower Picrorhiza Rhizome and Rhizoma Picrorhizae.

TCM Herbalism:Medicinals and Classifications. ✵The article gives records of the herb Figwortflower Picrorhiza Rhizome, its English name, Latin name, property and flavor, its botanical source 2 plant species, ①.Picrorhiza scrophulariiflora Pennell., ②.Picrorhiza kurroa Royle., with a detailed introduction to the botanical features of these two plant species, the growth characteristics, and ecological environment of these two plant species, the features of the herb Figwortflower Picrorhiza Rhizome, its pharmacological actions, medicinal efficacy, and administration guide.

Rhizoma Picrorhizae(Figwortflower Picrorhiza Rhizome).

Figwortflower Picrorhiza Rhizome:herb photo Pin Yin Name: Hú Huánɡ Lián.
 English Name: Figwortflower Picrorhiza Rhizome.
 Latin Name: Rhizoma Picrorhizae.
 Property and flavor: cold, bitter.

 Brief introduction: The Herb Rhizoma Picrorhizae is the dried rhizome of Picrorhiza scrophulariiflora Pennell(family Scrophulariaceae), used (1).to remove damp-heat for the treatment of acute dysentery and jaundice, and (2).to relieve consumptive fever in cases of phthisis and infantile malnutrition. The herb is commonly known as Rhizoma Picrorhizae, Figwortflower Picrorhiza Rhizome, Hú Huánɡ Lián.

 Botanical source: Common herbal classics defined the herb Rhizoma Picrorhizae(Figwortflower Picrorhiza Rhizome) as the dried rhizome of species (1). Picrorhiza scrophulariiflora Pennell., or (2). Picrorhiza kurroa Royle., they are plants of the Neopicrorhiza(Picrorhiza Royle ex Benth.). genus, the Scrophulariaceae family of the Tubiflorae order. These commonly used species are introduced as:

(1).Picrorhiza scrophulariiflora Pennell.

 Picrorhiza scrophulariiflora Pennell:plant photo and drawing Botanical description: It is commonly known as Hú Huánɡ Lián. Perennial herb, hairy. Rhizome cylindrical, slightly woody, 15~20 cm long. Leaves nearly root, slightly leathery; Leaf blade spatulate, 5~10 cm long, apex acute, base narrow into the winged sheathed petiole, margin serrate. Flower stems are longer than leaves; Spikes 5~10 cm long, with a few bracts below; Bracts oblong or lanceolate, equal to calyx; 5 sepals, lanceolate, ca. 5 mm long, ciliate; Corolla shorter than calyx, apex 5 equal lobes, lobes ovate, ciliate, inner mask sparsely pilose, outer glabrous or subglabrous; 4 stamens, filaments slender, corolla extended, glabrous; Ovary 2-locular, style slender, stigma simple. Capsule long ovate, 6 mm long, slightly slotted laterally, mainly interlocular dehiscent. Seeds oblong, 1 mm long. It is flowering in June, fruiting in July.

 Picrorhiza scrophulariiflora Pennell:drawing of plant with rootEcological environment: The plant grows in alpine meadows. The plant distributes in the area of the Himalayas.

 Growth characteristics: The plant prefers cool wet, fertile soil, suitable for high altitude areas of cultivation.

 Characters of herbs: The rhizome of Picrorhiza scrophulariiflora Pennell is cylindrical, straight or curved, mostly unbranched, most of the herb on the market are small segments, 2~9 cm long and 3~8 mm in diameter. The surface is grayish yellow to yellowish brown, shiny and rough, with longitudinal wrinkles and transverse ring lines, and the area where the cork bark falls off is brown, there are residual leaf marks on the upper end, densely scaly, dark red-brown, or semicircular knot marks after falling off. The root marks are dotted, and there are many dots near nodes. The texture of the herb is hard and brittle, easily broken, with dust when it is broken, it can be seen that there are 4-7 dots of vascular bundles on the fracture surface, arranged in a ring. The herb has a slight smell, it tastes extremely bitter and lasting. The herb which has thick strips, there is powder dust when broken, the fracture surface is gray-black and tastes bitter is better.

 Pharmacological actions: The herb has the ①.Liver protective, cholagogue function; ②.The antifungal effect, the water infusion of the herb Rhizoma Picrorhizae (1:4) in vitro, have different degrees of inhibition on Trichophyton violaceum, Trichophyton concentricum, Trichophyton gypseum, Achorion schoenleinii, Microsporon audouini, Microsporum ferrugineum, Microsporum lanosum, Microsporum gypseum, Epidermophyton inguinale, Epidermophyton rubrum, Kaufman-Wolf's Epidermis, Nocardia stella, and other dermatophytes, etc.

 Medicinal efficacy: Clear dampness and heat, eliminate deficiency heat, remove bone steaming, clear heat and drying dampness, purge fire and detoxify. Indicated for dampness-heat dysentery, jaundice, hemorrhoid disease, Yin deficiency and bone steaming, bone steaming and hot flushes, hot flushes and night sweats, infantile infatile malnutrition with fever, dampness heat and dysentery, jaundice, vomiting blood, epistasis(nose bleeding), red eyes and swelling pain of eyes, carbuncle swelling ulcer sore, hemorrhoids swelling poison, etc.

 Administration of Rhizoma Picrorhizae(Hú Huánɡ Lián): 
Reference: Administration Guide of Rhizoma Picrorhizae(Hú Huánɡ Lián)
TCM Books: ①.Internally:1.5~9 grams;②.Internally:water decoction, 0.5~1.5 qian(about 1.5~4.5 grams), or prepare to pill,powder.Externally:grinded into fine powder and apply stick, or drop to eyes with infusing liquid;③.Internally:water decoction, 6~12 grams, prepared to pill, powder.Externally:proper amount, grinded to powder and apply stick, or drop eyes with infusing liquid.

(2).Picrorhiza kurroa Royle.

 Picrorhiza scrophulariiflora Pennell:flowering plants Botanical description: It is commonly known as Xi Zang Hú Huánɡ Lián. Perennial herb, 5~10 cm tall. Rhizome stout, long conical, transverse, 15~50 cm long, internodes dense, often dark brown scaly old leaves and terete branches. Leaves subbasal, often integrated rosette; Leaf blade spatulate to ovate, 2~7 cm long, 1.5~3.5 cm wide, apex rounded or obtuse, base gradually narrowed into a short stalk, margin except base obtuse serrate, glabrous, blackened when dry. Scape arising from leaves, 5~15 cm tall, glandular-hairy, flowers dense into a spikelike panicle; Bracts, calyx hairy, bracts ovate; 4 sepals, 5~6 mm long, one lobe several linear, the other 4 lobes sublanceolate, narrowly oblong to narrowly elliptic; Corolla dark purple or light blue, bilobate, inside and outside with sparsely pilose; 4 stamens, 2-strong, inserted in middle of corolla tube; Ovary 2-chambered; Ovules numerous per compartment, style slender, stigma capitate. Capsule ovoid, 9~12 mm long, apex 4-lobed. Seeds numerous, oblong, glossy, reticulate. Its flowering period is from June to August, fruiting from August to September.

 Ecological environment: The plant grows in the rocks and stone piles in the alpine region with an altitude of 3,600-4,400 meters or the sunny place of the shallow soil layer. The plant distributes in Sichuan, Yunnan, Xizang, and other areas of China.

 Characters of herbs: The rhizome of Picrorhiza kurroa Royle is cylindrical, slightly curved and occasionally branched, with a length of 3~12 cm and a diameter of 2~14 mm. The surface is grayish brown to dark brown, with protruding bud marks, round root marks or fine root residues, the thicker ones have tight transverse wrinkles, and the upper ends are densely covered with dark brown scaly petiole residues. The herb is light, the texture of the herb is hard and brittle, easily broken, the fracture surface is light brown or dark brown, with 4~10 white vascular bundles arranged in a ring. The herb has a slight smell, it tastes extremely bitter. The herb which strips are thick, the texture of the herb is crisp and tastes bitter is better.
Herbs Clearing Heat and Drying Dampness.

 Introduction: Herbs Clearing Heat and Drying Dampness: an agent or substance bitter in taste and cold in property that is effective for eliminating heat and dampness, usually used in the treatment of diseases caused by damp-heat, such as acute jaundice, acute dysentery, urinary infection, eczema, boils and abscesses.
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