Introduction of Chuan Shan Long:Chuanlong Yam or Rhizoma Dioscoreae Nipponicae.

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:Dispelling Wind-Damp Herbs.

 TCM Herbs Icon06 Introduction: Dispelling Wind-Damp Herbs: an agent or substance herbs that dispels wind and damp, mainly for relieving rheumatism and related conditions.

 
Rhizoma Dioscoreae Nipponicae(Chuan Di Long).

Rhizoma Dioscoreae Nipponicae Pin Yin Name: Chuān Dì Lónɡ,or Chuān Shān Lónɡ.
 English Name: Chuanlong Yam.
 Latin Name: Rhizoma Dioscoreae Nipponicae.
 Property and flavor: neutral, bitter.

 Brief introduction: The herb Rhizoma Dioscoreae Nipponicae is the dried rhizome of Dioscorea nipponica Makino(family Dioscoreaceae), used to dispel wind-damp, activate blood circulation, unblock collateral meridians and resolve phlegm in the treatment of rheumatalgia, sprain, traumatic pains, and chronic cough with expectoration. The herb is commonly known as Rhizoma Dioscoreae Nipponicae, Chuān Dì Lónɡ.

 Botanical source: Official herbal classics defined the herb Rhizoma Dioscoreae Nipponicae(Chuan Di Long) as the dried rhizome of (1). Dioscorea nipponica Makino. Other famous herbal classics defined the herb Rhizoma Dioscoreae Nipponicae(Chuan Di Long) as the dried rhizome of (1). Dioscorea nipponica Makino., (2). Dioscorea nipponica Makino subsp.rosthornii(Prain et Burkill)C.T.Ting. They are plants of the Dioscorea genus, Dioscoreaceae family, Liliflorae order. These 2 commonly used species are introduced as:

 Dioscorea nipponica Makino. (1).Dioscorea nipponica Makino.:
 Botanical description: It is commonly known as Chuān Lóng Shǔ Yǔ. Herbs perennial twining, up to 5 meters long. Rhizome transverse, cylindrical, woody, much-branched, cork layer markedly exfoliated. Stem sinistral, cylindrical, subglabrous. Single leaves alternate; Leaf 10~20 cm long; Leaf blade palmately cordate, variable, stem base leaves 10~15 cm long, 9~13 cm wide, margin unequal triangular lobed, middle lobed or deeply lobed, apex leaf blade small, nearly entire, surface yellowish-green, glossy, glabrous or sparsely white pilose, especially dense in veins. Flowers unisexual, dioecious. The male inflorescence is an axillary spike, the base of the inflorescence is usually 2~4 integrated umbels, the top of the inflorescence is usually a single flower. Bracts lanceolate, apex acuminate, shorter than perianth; Perianth discoid, 6-lobed, lobes apex obtuse; 6 stamens, inserted in the center of perianth lobes, anthers introverted. Female inflorescence spicate, solitary; Perianth 6-lobed, lobes lanceolate; Pistil stigma 3-lobed, lobes 2-lobed. Capsule pale yellow at maturity, triangular, apex concave, base nearly rounded, each rib winged, varying in size, generally about 2 cm long and 1.5 cm wide. Seed each chamber 2, sometimes only 1 development, grows at the base of the central axis, all-round have unequal thin film shape wing, the upper part is rectangular, length is about 2 times than width. Its flowering period is from June to August.

 Dioscorea nipponica Makino.Ecological environment: the plant grows on slopes, forest sides, river valleys, and bushes at an altitude of 300~2,000 meters above sea level. It distributes in north, northwest (except Xinjiang), the middle and lower reaches area of the Yangtze River, and other areas of China.

 Growth characteristics: The plant Dioscorea nipponica can grow at 8~35℃, but the best temperature for its growth is 15~25℃. Drought tolerant, plants need light from the late seedling stage to mature age. It is advisable to select loose and fertile sandy loam for cultivation. Loam and clay loam can also be selected for planting.

 Dioscorea nipponica Makino. Characters of herbs: Rhizomes cylindrical, slightly curved, branched, 10~15 cm long, 0.3~1.5 cm in diameter. Surface yellowish-white or brownish yellow, irregular longitudinal groove, with punctuate root marks and protruding stem marks on one side, occasionally membranous light brown skin and fine roots. The quality is hard, the section is flat, white or yellow-white, scattered has light brown vascular bundle small point. Slight smell, bitter taste.

 Pharmacological actions: The herb Chuanlong Yam has antitussive, expectorant, antiasthmatic, anti-hypoxia, inhibit platelet agglutination, diuretic, antibacterial, antiviral and other functions. Water decoction of the Chuanlong Yam can inhibit cellular immunity and humoral immunity and enhance the phagocytic function of phagocytes. It can significantly reduce cholesterol level and blood pressure, delay heart rate, and improve coronary circulation.

 Medicinal efficacy: Activate blood circulation and free tendons, promoting blood circulation to remove the meridian obstruction, help digestion and alleviate water retention, dispelling wind and eliminate dampness, removing phlegm, preventing attack or recurrence of malaria, relieve cough. It is indicated for the treatment of wind-cold-dampness arthralgia(anemofrigid-damp arthralgia), numbness of limbs, chronic tracheitis, thoracic obstruction and cardiodynia(heartache), dyspepsia(indigestion), traumatic injury from fall, malaria, carbuncle swelling, etc.

 Administration of Rhizoma Dioscoreae Nipponicae(Chuān Dì Lónɡ): 
 
Reference: Administration Guide of Rhizoma Dioscoreae Nipponicae(Chuān Dì Lónɡ)
TCM Books: N/A(CP),Internally:water decoction, 0.5~1 liang(about 15~30 grams),fresh herb 1~2 liang(about 30~60 grams),or infusing in wine.Externally:mashed the fresh herb and apply stick.(DCTM),Internally:water decoction, dry herb 6~9 grams,fresh herb 30~45 grams,or infusing in wine.Externally:proper amount,mashed the fresh herb and apply stick(CHMM).


 Dioscorea nipponica Makino subsp.rosthornii Prain et Burkill C.T.Ting. (2).Dioscorea nipponica Makino subsp.rosthornii(Prain et Burkill)C.T.Ting.:
 Botanical description: It is commonly known as Chái Huáng Jiāng. The main difference between this subspecies and the original subspecies is that the plant is thick and strong, the rhizome has no spayed cork, the flowers have more or less stalks, the number of chromosomes is 40, and the content of potato saponins in the rhizome is low, the average is 1.25%. In terms of geographical distribution, they are transitional plants in the warm zone, distributed in central China south of Qinling mountains. In addition to its different morphological characteristics, Dioscorea nipponica has a chromosome of 20 and a high content of 1.5-2%. It is distributed in northern China to the north of the Qinling mountains and belongs to the temperate zone. Its flowering period is from June to August, fruiting from August to October.

 Dioscorea nipponica Makino subsp.rosthornii Prain et Burkill C.T.Ting.Ecological environment: The plant grows in the valley thickets and sparse miscellaneous wood forests with an altitude of 1,000~1,800 meters above sea level, and the forest margins. It distributes in the south of Qinling mountain, the south of Gansu, the middle reaches area of the Yangtze River, southwest, and other areas of China.

 Trait identification: Similar as the rhizome of Dioscorea nipponica Makino. Only the rhizome is thicker, smooth surface, no exfoliation.
 
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References:
  • 1.Introduction of Chuan Shan Long:Chuanlong Yam or Rhizoma Dioscoreae Nipponicae.
  • 2.TCM Books:DCTM(Dictionary of the Chinese Traditional Medicine),CHMM(Chinese Herbal Materia Medica).

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