Astringent Herbs

Fructus Corni (Shanzhuyu)
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The source is from the ripe sarcocarp of the deciduous arbor Comus officinalis Sieb. et Zucc., family Cornaceae. The medicinal material is mainly produced in Zhejiang, Anhui, and Henan provinces. The fruit is collected in autumn when it is ripe, baked over a soft fire or treated with boiling water for a moment, the kern being re-moved, and then dried in the sun or baked for medicinal use.

Medicinal Properties: Sour in flavor, slightly warm in nature, and attributive to the liver and kidney meridians.

Actions: Invigorate the liver and kidney, astringe and preserve the essence.

fructus corni (shanzhuyu)


1. It can be used for deficiency of the liver and kidney manifested as dizziness, soreness of the waist and knees, impotence, emission, spermatorrhoea, enuresis. For those with deficiency of the liver-yin and kidney-yin, it is often used together with Shudihuang (Radix Rehmanniae Praeparata ), Shanyao ( Rhizoma Dioscoreae), and Zexie (Rhizoma Alismatis), etc., such as Liuwei Dihuang Wan (Pill). For those with insufficiency of kidney-yang, it is often used in combination with Buguzhi ( Fructus Psoraleae), Danggui ( Radix Angelicae Sinensis), and Shexiang (MoschusArtifactus), etc., such as Caohuan Dan (Bolus). It is often combined with Sangpiaoxiao ( Ootheca Mantidis), Yizhiren (Fructus Atpiniae Oxphyllae ) , Shayuanzi (Semen Astragali Complanati ) to treat incontinence.

fructus corni (shanzhuyu)

2. It is used for excessive sweat due to deficiency. In treating debility after illness, hypofunction of connective tissue, profuse perspiration, it can be used together with Renshen (Radix Ginseng), Huangqi ( Radix Astragali ) , and Baishaoyao (Radix Paeoniae Alba), etc.; for profuse cold sweat and collapse due to weakness of the body, its large dosage together with Renshen (Radix Ginseng) should be decocted for oral use immediately, or Fuzi (Radix Aconiti Lateralis Praeparata ) , Longgu ( Os Draconis), and Mull (Concha Ostreae ) are added again to those to astringe and preserve the essence.
In addition, it can be used to arrest bleeding due to its astringing property. For metrorrhagia and metrostaxis and menorrhagia, it is often used together with Haipiaoxiao ( Os Sepiellae seu Sepiae ), Qiancaotan (Radix Rubiae, Carbonized), such as Guchong Tang (Decoction).

Usage and Dosage:
5 -10 g is used in decoction for oral use, the large dosage may be up to 30 g, and 1 -3 g is used in pill or powder.

It should be used with caution in those with excessive fire from the gate of life (due to deficiency of kidney-yin), or damp-heat or dysuria.
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