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Chinese External Herbal Remedies for Hypertension

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Herbal Dressing for Hypertension

Herbal dressing is an important external therapy in traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). It involves pasting herbal mixture in particular body regions such as the navel, palms and soles. By stimulating the acupoints in the regions, a medicinal effect infiltrates through the skin and reaches the meridians, activating qi (vital energy) movement and promoting internal balance. TCM physicians prescribe herbs after a detailed consultation with individuals, providing as creams, powder or soft extracts. The drug is pasted onto a selected body surface and covered by gauze or tape. Occasionally, physicians also apply with moxibustion or a hot compress to work together. Individuals can do it at home with the prescriptions too.

Below are two sample prescriptions for hypertension:

Castor bean (50g), medicinal evodia fruits (20g), aconite root (20g), borneol (10g) and fresh ginger (150g). Grind the first four ingredients in powder mixture, put in a container and put aside. At night, mash up 15g of ginger, add in 10g of the herbal mixture, paste at the center of the foot soles and cover for 12 hours, then take away in the morning. Do this for seven times as one course. The center of the sole has an important acupoint of the kidney meridian, known as yong quan (Ki 1). Stimulating it can refresh the mind, clear fire and soothe the liver, which help lower blood pressure.
Medicinal evodia fruits (processed with pig’s bile juice), dried earthworm, and Apocyni veneti leaf and white alum (10g for each); magnetite (50g), grind the ingredients into herbal mixture. Every night before sleep, take 1g of the herbal mixture, mix with a few drops of rice vinegar to make it in paste form, then fill into the navel, and keep in place for the rest of the night. Do this for one month as one course. The navel is known as shen que (Cv 8), which is an important acupoint of the Conception Vessel Meridian. The point enhances the communication between the organs, and regulates the qi movement of the whole body. Stimulating this point promotes the balance of the body.

Before the process, clean and wipe the body regions properly. In order to make sure the herbal remedy acting on the precise regions, the dressing should be fixed by tape so that it won’t be loosen due to changing positions. If available, apply moxa warming for 15 to 20 minutes, which can enhance the therapeutic actions.

Medicinal evodia fruits      Aconite root      Borneol
Medicinal evodia fruits
Aconite root