Ban Xia Xie Xin Tang


 ‘Pinellia Combination to Purge (the area below) the Heart’
Source: Treatise on febrile diseases caused by Cold (Shang Han Lun, 200)

chronic digestive problems with Cold and Heat symptoms

Pinellia ternata (Ban Xia, pinellia)
Coptis chinensis (Huang Lian, coptis)
Scutellaria baicalensis (Huang Qin, Baical skullcap root)
Panax ginseng (Ren Shen, ginseng)
Zingiber officinalis (Gan Jiang, dried ginger)
Zizyphus jujuba (Da Zao, Chinese dates)
Glycyrrhiza uralensis (Gan Cao, liquorice)

Major therapeutic action
Harmonises the Stomach and Intestines and treats bloating, excessive belching, reflux, nausea, and/or vomiting.

Biomedical action
Enhances and regulates digestive functions, tonic to the digestive system, anti-inflammatory, mucolytic, stomachic, antiemetic.

*  Digestive disorders characterised by mixed complexes of Heat, Cold, deficiency and excess. The most common presentation is one involving Heat in the upper digestive system with symptoms of acid reflux, excessive burping, and nausea and digestive complaints including loose stools still possibly with bits of undigested food, and stabbing abdominal pain. The focus of this formula’s action is in the upper gastroin- testinal system, especially the epigastrum, however it is also used for lower digestive tract problems with the same pathological mechanism.
*  Because this formula addresses a variety of pathological mechanisms, it has a broad application, and is especially suited to many of the complex digestive disturbances that are so common in Western society. With the appropriate key symptoms, this formula can be used to treat gastritis, gastric ulcers, nervous stomach, food allergies, hyperacidity, indigestion, dyspepsia, hiatus hernia, tomatitis, leaky gut syndrome and functional intestinal disorders.

Key symptoms for use
*  epigastric distension and fullness, but the epigastrum feels soft when palpated
*  nausea, vomiting, acid reflux
*  borborygmus
*  loss of appetite
*  intermittent diarrhoea
*  yellow, greasy tongue coat

*  With severe lethargy, loss of appetite, loose stools, and a weakly palpable pulse, combine with Si Jun Zi Tang.
*  With severe heartburn, add Huang Lian & Wu Zhu Yu.
*  With symptoms of anorexia, nausea and vomiting, sour regurgitation, fetor, and severe eructation add San Leng & e Zhu.
The typical dose is three grams twice daily, before meals. In severe or acute cases, or the early stages of treatment (the first two weeks), a 50-100% increase in dose may be used, then tapered off as the treatment takes effect.

Cautions and contraindications
None noted.
Contraindicated in patterns of anorexia with fever or a feeling of heat in the afternoon, constipation with dry stools, epigastric pain, xerostomia, and thirst with little or no desire to drink.

The traditional aetiology of this condition points to the improper use of a purgative herbal formula. More common these days are poor dietary habits.