Plantain seed (Cheqianzi)-Plantago asiatica-Plantago depressa -Semen plantaginis

Plantain seed (Cheqianzi)

Plantago asiatica L. (Fam. Plantaginaceae).
Plantago asiatica L. (Fam. Plantaginaceae).

Pharmaceutical Name: Semen plantaginis
Botanical Name: 1. Plantago asiatica L.; 2. Plantago depressa Willd. (Fam. Plantaginaceae).
Common Name: Plantain seed, Plantain herb.
Source of Earliest Record: Shennong Bencao Jing.
Part Used & Method for Pharmaceutical Preparations: The seeds, gathered in summer or autumn when they are ripe, are dry-fried or fried with salt water.
Dried ripe seed.
Semen Plantaginis is the dried ripe seed of Plantago asiatica L. or Plantago depressa Willd. (Fam. Plantaginaceae). The former is produced in every part in China, whereas the latter is produced chiefly in the provinces of Heilongjiang, Liaoning, and Hebei. The seed is collected in summer and autumn, dried in sunlight, and cleaned. It can be stir-baked plain or with salt water.
Properties & Taste: Sweet and cold.
Meridians: Kidney, liver and lung.
Functions: 1. To promote water metabolism and relieve abnormal urination; 2. To stop diarrhea; 3. To clear heat in the liver and brighten eyes; 4. To clear the lung and resolve phlegm.
Indications & Combinations:
1. Damp-heat flowing into the urinary bladder manifested as dysuria, painful urination, frequent urination and distending and full sensation in the lower abdominal region. Plantain seed (Cheqianzi) is used with Clematis stem (Mutong), Capejasmine (Zhizi) and Talc (Huashi) in the formula Bazheng San.
2. Damp-heat diarrhea. Plantain seed (Cheqianzi) is used with Poria (Fuling), White atractylodes (Baizhu) and Alismatis rhizome (Zexie).
3. Heat in the liver manifested as red, painful and swollen eyes. Plantain seed (Cheqianzi) is used with Chrysanthemum flower (Juhua), Chinese gentian (Longdancao) and Scutellaria root (Huangqin).
4. Deficiency of yin in the liver and kidney manifested as blurred vision and cataracts. Plantain seed (Cheqianzi) is used with Fresh rehmannia root (Shengdihuang), Ophiopogon root (Maidong) and Wolfberry fruit (Gouqizi).
5. Cough with profuse sputum due to heat in the lungs. Plantain seed (Cheqianzi) is used with Trichosanthes fruit (Gualou), Scutellaria root (Huangqin) and Tendrilled fritillary bulb (Chuanbeimu).
6. For inflammation of the eyes, cataracts, and blurred vision, Semen Plantaginis clears Liver Heat and improves the vision. It is used with Flos Chrysanthemi Morifolii ( Ju Hua), Radix Gentianae (Long Dan Cao), and Radix Scutellariae (Huang Qin), or with Radix Rehmanniae (Sheng Di Huang), Radix Ophiopogonis (Mai Dong), and Fructus Lycii (Gou Qi Zi).
Dosage: 5-10 g wrapped in gauze and decocted in water for an oral dose.
Cautions & Contraindications: This herb should be wrapped in cloth for decoctions if a strainer is not used.

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