Huang Bai – Phellodendron bark – Amur Cork tree – “Yellow Fir”

Nature: bitter, cold

Enters: Kidney, Bladder, Large Intestine

Actions: Clears heat and dries dampness (particularly from the lower Jiao); reduces fire; eliminates toxicity; clears deficiency heat; lowers blood pressure

• Damp-heat (especially in the lower Jiao): painful urination, low back pain, thick yellow leukorrhea, foul-smelling diarrhea, dysenteric disorders, prostatitis, red, swollen and painful legs, feet, knees, or jaundice.
• Yin deficiency heat: tidal fever, night sweats, spermatorrhea, steaming bone disorder, afternoon fever.
• Damp-heat-toxicity: carbuncles, boils, sores, lesions, eczema. Can also be used as a wash, powder, or ointment.
• Useful in meningitis.
• Bacillary dysentery.
• Topical: vaginitis and cervicitis from Trichomonas infection.
• Conjunctivitis.
• Weak antibiotic: contains berberine ∼1% or more (less than Huang lian).
Li Dong Yuan: Leads rising Yang Qi back down to its lower source.
MLT: Useful for kidney fire with nocturnal emissions, insatiable sexual urges.
Hsu: Antiphlogistic, anti-inflammatory.
DY: With Zhi mu to clear heat, enrich Yin, drain deficiency fire, resolve toxins, and eliminate dampness in the lower burner. For such indications as:
– 1. Evening fever, steaming bones, and night sweats caused by Yin deficiency.
– 2. Seminal emission, premature ejaculation, easy erection, excessive thinking about sex, sexual hyperexcitability, erotic dreams, nymphomania due to deficiency fire and hyperactive ministerial fire.
– 3. Dysuria due to Yin deficiency and to Yang losing its ability to transform (at the level of the bladder). For all these indications, both herbs should be salt mix-fried to guide their action toward the lower burner and kidneys.
• With Cang zhu for mutual reinforcement, to clear heat, dry dampness, disperse swelling, and stop pain. For indications such as:
– 1. Wilting of the lower extremities with pain in the sinews and bones due to damp-heat pouring downward. (Er Miao San) Use salt mix-fried Huang bai.
– 2. Abnormal vaginal discharge, external vaginal itching, and cloudy, scanty urination due to damp-heat. (Use Cang zhu which has been stir-fried until scorched.)
– 3. Red, swollen, hot, painful joints due to wind, damp, heat impediment. (Cang Zhu San)
• With Ze xie to clear and drain fire due to Yin deficiency, and clear and eliminate dampness and heat. For indications such as:
– 1. Steaming bones, night sweats, and seminal emission due to deficiency fire. (Zhi Bai Di Huang Wan) Both herbs should be salt mix-fried.
– 2. Inhibited urination and pricking, painful urination due to damp-heat in the lower burner. (Salt mix-fried Huang bai and either unprepared or salt mix-fried Ze xie should be used.)

Dose: 3-12g

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