Introduction of Hu Zhang:Giant Knotweed Rhizome or Rhizoma Polygoni Cuspidati.

TCM Herbalism:Medicinals and Classifications. ✵The TCM herbalism is also known as pharmaceutics of Traditional Chinese Medicine, or Chinese pharmaceutics, is the branch of health science dealing with the preparation, dispensing, and proper utilization of Chinese herbs. It is majorly composed of Introduction of Chinese Medicinals, Classification of Chinese Herbs, Formulas, and Patent medicines.

Classifications of Herbs:Herbs Clearing Heat and Drying Dampness.

 TCM Herbs Icon05 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.

 
Rhizoma Polygoni Cuspidati(Giant Knotweed Rhizome).

Rhizoma Polygoni Cuspidati Pin Yin Name: Hǔ Zhànɡ.
 English Name: Giant Knotweed Rhizome.
 Latin Name: Rhizoma Polygoni Cuspidati.
 Property and flavor: slight cold, bitter.

 Brief introduction: The Herb Rhizoma Polygoni Cuspidati is the dried rhizome of giant or japanese knotweed, Polygonum cuspidatum sieb.et Zucc.(family Polygonaceae), used (1).to clear heat, counteract toxins, and promote bile flow in cases of hepatitis, jaundice, dysentery, bladder damp-heat, and lung heat with cough, (2).to activate blood and remove stasis for treating amenorrhea and traumatic injuries, and (3).externally for burns and venomous snake-bite. The herb is commonly known as Rhizoma Polygoni Cuspidati, Giant Knotweed Rhizome, Hǔ Zhànɡ.

 Botanical source: The herb Rhizoma Polygoni Cuspidati(Giant Knotweed Rhizome) is the dried rhizome of Polygonum cuspidatum sieb.et Zucc., it is a plant of the Fallopia Genus, the Polygonaceae family of the Caryophyllales order. This commonly used species is introduced as:

(1).Polygonum cuspidatum Sieb. et Zucc.


 Polygonum cuspidatum Sieb. et Zucc 01 Botanical description: The Polygonum cuspidatum Sieb. et Zucc is a plant of the Polygonaceae family and Fallopia genus, perennial shrub herb, up to 1 meter high. Roots lying underground, woody, brown, section obvious. Stems erect, tufted, glabrous, hollow, with scattered fuchsia spots. Leaves alternate; petiole short; stipules sheath membranous, brown, caducous; leaf blade broadly ovate or ovate-elliptic, 6~12 cm long, 5~9 cm wide, apex acute, base rounded or cuneate, entire, absent hair. Flowers unisexual, dioecious, axillary panicle; pedicel slender, central section, upper winged; perianth 5-parted, 2 lobes, outer 3-plex enlarged, fruiting on the back; 8 male flowers stamens; female flowers up to 3, stigma capitate. Achenes oval, 3 edges, dark brown. Its flowering period is from June to August, fruiting from September to October.

 Polygonum cuspidatum is a herbaceous perennial which forms large clumps 1~3 meters high. It is fully dioecious and can reproduce by seed and by large rhizomes which may reach a length of 5~6 meters. The stout stems are hollow and bamboo-like, extend from an erect base and are simple or little branched and glabrous with thinly membranous sheaths. Leaves are broadly ovate, truncate to cuneate at base, abruptly cuspidate, 5~15 cm long, 5~12 cm broad, with petioles 1~3 cm long. Greenish white flowers 2.5~3 mm long, densely arranged in axillary panicles; 3 styles; 8~10 stamens with longitudinally dehiscing anthers.

 Polygonum cuspidatum Sieb. et Zucc 02 Fruiting calyx wing-angled, 6-10 mm long. Achenes shiny black-brown, 3-4 mm long, acutely trigonous. Male flowers have branched panicles on upright racemes with the distal end of the raceme in the highest position; individual panicles generally point up. Female flowers are drooping or decumbent with the distal end in the lowest position; individual panicles are not oriented in a particular direction. Both male and female flowers possess vestigial organs of the opposite sex.

 Growth characteristics: The plant Polygonum cuspidatum is often found in valleys, near streams, or on the banks of rivers. It mainly distributes in central and southern China, southwest and north, northwest, and other areas. It prefers a mild and humid climate, cold, waterlogging resistance. Likewise, it is not strict to soil requirements, but it is better to grow with loose and fertile soil.

 Characters of herbs: Rhizome cylindrical, branched, varying in length, some up to 30 cm long, 0.5~2.5 cm, nodes slightly enlarged. The surface is tan to grayish brown, with obvious longitudinal wrinkles, fibrous root and dot fibrous root marks, branch tip and node have bud mark and sheath scale. Internode length 2~3 cm. Quality is hard, not easy to be broken, broken face palm yellow color, fibrous, skin and wood part easy to be separated, skin part is thinner, wood part occupies most, show radial shape, central pith or show hollow shape, longitudinal section has transverse partition, light smell, taste light bitter, astringent. The herb with a thick and solid shape, the fracture surface yellow is better.

 Pharmacological actions: ①.antibacterial effect in vitro and has an inhibitory effect on a variety of viruses; ②.hypotensive effect and slows down the heart rate; ③.resveratrol glycoside(polydatin) has the effect of lowering blood lipid, protecting the liver, and dilating capillary; ④.increase the cardiac output and pulse pressure; ⑤.resist platelet aggregation and TXB2 production; ⑥.resveratrol has a strong inhibitory effect on the trichophyton rubrum, trichophyton interdigitalis that cause stubborn dermatitis, sweet scar tinea; ⑦.anti-tumor, hypoglycemia, sedation, hemostasis, diuresis, leukogenic effect(increase white blood cells).

 Medicinal efficacy: Dispel wind and eliminate dampness, disperse stasis and analgesic, break blood stasis, activate blood circulation and dissipate stasis, dispel the wind and free channels, relieve cough and reduce phlegm, detoxify. It is indicated for arthralgia and pain or numbness, rheumatic arthralgia and myalgia(aching of tendons and bones), jaundice with damp-heat pathogen, stranguria with turbid discharge, morbid leukorrhea, menischesis, menorrhalgia, postpartum lochia, abdominal mass, abdominal mass and gathering, hemorrhoids bleeding, water and fire burns, fall injury, carbuncle swelling and sore poisoning, cough with excessive phlegm, nasty sore and tinea, venomous snake bite, etc.

 Administration of Rhizoma Polygoni Cuspidati(Hǔ Zhànɡ): 
 
Reference: Administration Guide of Rhizoma Polygoni Cuspidati(Hǔ Zhànɡ)
TCM Books: Internally:9~15 grams. Externally:proper amount, prepare to water decoction or ointment and smear stick(CP), Internally:water decoction, 0.3~1 liang(about 9~30 grams), infusing in wine or prepare to pill, powder. Externally:grinded into fine powder, burned to ashed and apply powder, prepare to paste and smear, or soaking with water decoction(DCTM), Internally:water decoction, 10~15 grams, or infusing in wine, or prepare to pill, powder. Externally:proper amount, grinded into fine powder and apply stick, or apply stick with concentrated decoction liquid, or prepare paste to smear(CHMM).

 
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References:
  • 1.Introduction of Hu Zhang:Giant Knotweed Rhizome or Rhizoma Polygoni Cuspidati.
  • 2.TCM Books:DCTM(Dictionary of the Chinese Traditional Medicine),CHMM(Chinese Herbal Materia Medica).

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