Herbal Exhibition
Radix Achyranthis Bidentatae
Twotoothed Achyranthes Root
Niuxi

Source
The root of Achyranthes bidentata Bl. (Fam. Amaranthaceae).

Distribution
Mainly in Chinese provinces such as Henan; also in provinces such as Hebei, Shanxi, Shandong and Jiangsu; mostly cultivated. Also in Hong Kong.

Harvest & Processing
Collect roots in winter when leaves wither; remove fibrous roots, soil and sand; tie roots up in small bundles; dry under the sun until shrivelled; cut evenly at the top end; dry under the sun again.

Description
Slender and cylindrical, sometimes slightly curved; thicker at the top end and tapering towards the bottom; 15-90 cm long; 0.4-1 cm in diameter. Outer surface greyish-yellow or pale brown, marked with twisted, fine longitudinal wrinkles, lalongate (transversely elongated) lenticels and sparse rootlet scars. Hard and brittle; breaks easily, softens when moistened. When broken, surface even; yellowish-brown; slightly cuticular oily and soft; medial xylem at centre of surface relatively large and yellowishwhite; under magnification, 2-4 rings of numerous punctiform (dot-like) vascular bundles scattered around xylem. Odour: faint; taste: slightly sweet and a little bitter-astringent.

Indications
1. Sore throat
2. Hypertension
3. Amenorrhoea, retention of placenta
4. Carbuncles, trauma
5. Weakness in the lower part of the body and the legs, rheumatic arthralgia

Chemical Composition
Mainly contains triterpene saponins and sterols.

Photos

 

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The information and images in this Online Herbal Exhibition is form the book, "An Illustrated Chinese Materia Medica in Hong Kong", edited by Professor Zhao Zhongzhen, School of Chinese Medicine, Hong Kong Baptist University. For the complete collection of Chinese Materia Medica compiled by Professor Zhao, please go to this website: http://www.bucmm.org.

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