Herbs & Plants

Stephania tetrandra

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Botanical Name :Stephania tetrandra S. Moore,  (han fang ji, fen fang ji), Aristolochia fangchi, Wu; (guang fang ji, guang dong mu fang ji),Aristolochia westlandi, Hemsl.,Cocculus trilobus DC. (mu fang ji)
Family: Menispermaceae
Genus: Stephania
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Ranunculales
Species: S. tetranda
Common Name: stephania
Common Chinese Name :Han-fang-chi or Fen-fang-qi.
Pharmaceutical name: Radix Stephania tetrandra (han fang ji), Radix aristolochiae fangchi (guang fang ji), Radix cocculus trilobus (mu fangji)
Japanese: boi
bang gi
Cantonese: fong ke

Habitat :Han fang ji (fen fang ji) is distributed in Zhejiang, Anhui, Jiangxi, Hubei provinces.
Guangdong mu fang ji (guang fang ji) is distributed in Guang Dong and Guang Xi provinces.

Stephania tetrandra S. Moore is a species of flowering plant. It is a herbaceous perennial vines growing to around 4 m tall, with a large, woody caudex. The leaves are arranged spirally on the stem, and are peltate, with the leaf petiole attached near the centre of the leaf.

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Medicinal Uses:
Guang fang ji contains toxic amounts of aristolochic acid and can cause renal failure and even death; it is used in TCM only with great caution. In May of 2000 the FDA started detaining any plants or medicines suspected of containing aristolochic acid unless laboratory testing indicates the substances test negative for aristolochic acid. (Ony tests which use liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry [LC/MS/MS] method with a precision of less than 0.5 parts per million (PPM) are acceptable.) The traditional way of using guang fang ji is via water decoction. Since aristolochic acid has low water solubility this is believed to much safer than taking the herb as an uncooked powder.

Fen fang ji is of low toxicity (standard dose is: 4.5 to 9g, overdose can occur at 30-100g) and is traditionally used to dispel wind and dampness to relieve pain and to promote diuresis. It is acrid, bitter and cold. The part used is the root. The main active alkaloids are: tetrandrine (12 to 23 grams / kg) and fangchinoline (0.3-3 mg/kg). Also present are: cyclanoline, menisine, menisidine, oxofangchirine, stephenanthrine, stepholidine and bisbenzylisoquinoline

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The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.


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