Resuscitative and Rejuvenating Herbs

Resuscitative herbs are those which restore consciousness and revive the spirit. They are used in fainting spells, children’s convulsions, epilepsy, strokes and other instances of sudden unconsciousness.

Unconsciousness due to heat excess is indicated by flushed complexion, body heat, yellow tongue fur and a rapid pulse. In such cases, resuscitatives are combined with “heat-clearing” drugs. Unconsciousness due to cold excess (pale complexion, cold extremities, white tongue fur and slow pulse) is treated in combination with “warming” drugs.

These drugs are generally reserved for use in emergencies: their prolonged use is damaging to the body’s primordial energies, yuan qi. If patients are weak or display symptoms of profuse, cold sweat, special care should be taken in using these drugs.



Natural distribution: Malaysia

Parts used: Coagulated resinous fissures of the tree

Nature: Pungent and bitter; slightly cold.

Affinity: Heart, spleen, lungs.

Effects: Resuscitative; antipyretic; analgesic; antispasmodic.

Indications: Fainting; convulsions and spasms; used externally on abscesses, boils, ringworm, cold sores, conjunctivitis, nasal mucositis, coughs.

Dosage: 0.18-0.35 g.

Remarks: The drug’s analgesic and antipyretic properties make it an excellent external remedy for abscesses, boils, sores, sore throat and other external heat excess symptoms.




Natural distribution: Tibet, northern India, Siberia.

Parts used: Dried secretion of the preputial follicles of the musk-deer.

Nature: Pungent; warm.

Affinity: Heart, spleen.

Effects: Resuscitative; cardiotonic; promotes circulation; stimulant.

Indications: Fainting; delirium; semi- conscious states; amenorrhoea; traumatic injuries; retained placenta or foetus.

Dosage: 0.2-0.4 g

Remarks: Pregnant women should not be exposed to the drug, for it may induce miscarriage.



Natural distribution: Southern China, Japan, Tibet, India.

Parts used: Rhizomes.

Nature: Pungent; warm.

Affinity: Heart, liver.

Effects: Resuscitative; dissolves phlegm in respiratory tract; stomachic; digestive.

Indications: Fainting due to heat excess or excess phlegm; hysteria; ringing in the ears and deafness; oppression in the chest; chronic dysentery.

Dosage: Dry 3-8 g; fresh 10-15 g.

Remarks: Sedative in insomnia; also a good digestive.

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