The rhizome of Atractylodes lancea (Thunb.) DC. or A. chinensis (DC.)
Koidz., family Cornpositae.
A. Lancea. Rhizome irregularly catenulate or nodular, slightly curved,
occasionally branching, 3-10 cm long, 1-2 cm in diameter. Cork grey-brown,
with wrinkles and fibrous root scars, stem base or scars remaining at
the tip. Prepared by crosscutting; section yellow-white, showing numerous
orange oil spots, named 'cinnabar spots'. White trichomatic crystals separating
out on long exposure. Strongly aromatic. A. chinensis: Similar to the
former, but oil spots lesser and odour lighter. Both are acrid and bitter
in taste, warm in nature, and attributive to spleen and stomach channels.
1. Deprive dampness and activate the spleen: For domination of dampness
and dampness-retention syndrome involving spleen-yang with fatigue, sleepiness,
feeling of fullness and oppression in the chest and abdomen, abdominal
distension and turbid, thick and greasy fur; for domination of dampness
with watery diarrhea, usually used together with Pericarpiurn Citri Reticuiatae,
Cortex Magnoliae Officinalis, such as Powder for Regulating the Function
of Stomach. Also for downward attack of dampness with leucorrhagia and
stranguria with turbid urine.
2. Expel wind and eliminate dampness: For arthralgia of dampness type
with swelling and pain of joints, usually used together with Cortex Phellodendri
(Powder of Phellodendri and Atractylodis), for those with prominent heat
and together with Herba Asari and Radix Aconiti for those with prominent
Promote sweating to expel cold from the body surface: For affection of
exogenous wind-cold-dampness with chilliness, fever, heaviness and pain
of the head and anhidrosis, usually used together with Rhizorna seu Radix
Notopterygli, Radix Ledebourieliae, etc.; also for darnpness toxin attacking
the superficies, such as eczema and pustulosis.
4. Remove nebula to improve the visual acuity: For night blindness, cataract,
internal and external oculopathy.
1. Gastric perfusion of its decoction lowers the level of blood sugar
in rabbits with alloxan diabetes.
2. Gastric perfusion of its decoction increases excretion of sodium and
potassium in rats without diuresis.
3. Its volatile oil and other two active components, eudesmol and hinesol,
inhibit the growth of esophageal cancer cells in vitro.
4. Clinically effective for the treatment of night blindness and keratomalacia
resulting from lack of vitamin A