Xian He Cao - Agrimonia pilosa

Professional Data
 Pin Yin
Xian He Cao
Herba Agrimoniae
 Introduction Back to Top
Herba Agrimoniae is the dried aerial part of Agrimonia pilosa Ledeb. (Fam. Rosaceae). The drug is collected in summer and autumn when foliage branch growing luxuriantly, removed from foreign matter, and dried.

 Western medical Back to Top
xian he cao is indicated in the treatment of hemorrhage, diarrhea, dysentery, malaria, carbuncles and hemorrhoids, etc..

 Eastern medical Back to Top
  • Pattern: Astringes to stop bleeding, nourishes deficiency, stops dysentery, kills parasites, removes Toxin, treats malaria, activates Blood and disperses swelling.
  • Properties: Bitter, astringent, slightly sweet, neutral.
  • Channels entered: Lung, Liver, Spleen and Large Intestine.
 Chemical constituents Back to Top
xian he cao contains agrimonine A, B, C, D, E, agrimonolide and tannin, etc..

 Pharmacological actions Back to Top
Hemostatic effect

Crude extracturm of xian he cao could promote the coagualtion of blood. Intravenous injection of agrimonine could shorten the bleeding time and coagulation time, and increase the platelet count.

Effects on the cardiovascular system and smooth muscle

Ethanol exract of water infusion of xian he cao could lower the blood pressure in rabbits. It oculd inhibit isolated frog heart. It could excite isolated intestinal canal of rabbit and guinea pig at low dosages but showed inhibitory effect at large dosages. Agrimonolide could lower the amplitude and tension of contraction of isolated rabbit intestines.

Anti-inflammatory effect

Water extract and water-alcohol extract of xian he cao had anti-inflammatory effect on rabbits' conjunctivitis induced by mustard oil or staphylococcus.

Anti-bacterial and anti-parasite effect

Hot water or ethanol infusion extract of xian he cao had in vitro inhibitory effect on staphylococcus aureus and bacillus subilis. It also had slight inhibitory effect on tubercle bacillus. xian he cao had killing or inhibitory effect on paramecium, tapeworm and vaginal trichomonad. Ethanol extract of xian he cao had anti-viral effect in mice.

Anti-cancer effect

xian he cao had quite good inhibitory effect on various transplanted tumors (S180, U14, B22, W256, EAC-ESC, B16, etc.) in animals, and the inhibitory rates varied from 36.2% ~ 65.9%. xian he cao had stable and significant anti-tumor effect, and the active ingredients existed in the root. Intraperitoneal injection of ethanol extract of the root of xian he cao at the dosage of 1.5g/kg for 10 days had inhibitory rates of 57.2%, 53.2% and 56.2% on mice S180 in repeated experiments, but it had no effect on mice BAC and L615.

 Clinical Studies Back to Top
Primary thrombocytopenia purpura

xian he cao, sheng di, 30~60g; hua sheng yi, xue yu tan, fu ling, bai zhu, e jiao, qian cao, dan pi, jiao san xian, mai ya, gu ya, 16g each; gou qi, he shou wu, bai mao gen, ou jie, 15g each; dan shen, zhi gan cao, 9g each. Modify the formula according to accompanied symptoms, 1 dose daily, 3 months as a course of treatment. 30 cases of primary thrombocytopenia purpura were treated, and 16 markedly effective, 8 effective, 3 improved and 3 ineffective.

Purpura nephritis

yu mi xue 30g; xian he cao, bai mao gen, 20g each; zi cao 12g; qian cao, dan pi, di yu tan, 9g each; shi wei, sheng di, haung qi, 15g each; san qi fen 3g. Modify the formula according to TCM patterns. 1 dose daily. After 30~60 doses, all treated 120 cases were cured.

Hemorrhage of the upper digestive tract

Supplemented Xie Xin Tang (huang lian 6g; huang qin 10g; da huang 8g; xian he cao, bai ji, wu zei gu, 15g each; sheng di yu 30g; ce bai tan 30g; qian cao gen 12g), 1 dose daily. 24 cases of hemorrhage of the upper digestive tract were treated and all were cured.


xian he cao 30g, wu mei 10g, jie geng 9g, zhi sheng ma 6g, bai shao 10g, he zi rou 12g, di jin cao 24g, zhi huang qi 15g, dang shen 12g, sheng bai zhu 12g, gan cao 10g. 1 dose daily, water decoction, 14 days as a course of treatment. Modify the formula according to TCM pattern.s 84 cases of chronic colonitis were treated, and 69 were cured, 8 improved, 2 ineffective.

Dysfunctional uterine bleeding

huang qi 15~30g; shu di 10~20G; e jiao 10~15g; xian he cao, di yu, bai shao, shan yao, xu duan, sang ji sheng, tu si zi, 15g each; shan yu rou 10g. Modify the formula according to TCM patterns. 1 dose daily, 6 days as a course of treatment. 56 cases of menopausal dysfunctional uterine bleeding were treated, 38 were cured, 14 effective and 4 ineffective.

Pain due to cancer

Decoction of xia he cao 50~80g was mixed with decoction of gan cao, bing lang, zhi ban xia, bai mao teng and long kui, 1 dose daily for 30 days. After 30 days, 1 dose every other day. 155 cases of pan due to cancer were treated, and 88 cases were relieved.

 References Back to Top

Except those noted, all references come from Weng Weiliang, et al., Clinical Chinese materia medica, Henan Science & Technology Press, 1998