English Name: erythrina, Oriental (or Himalayan) coral bean bark
Pharmaceutical Name: Cortex Erythrinae
Medica Category: Wind Damp Dispelling Herbs – Channel and Collateral Opening Herbs
Properties: Hai Tong Pi enters the Liver channel; it is bitter and acrid in nature and neutral in temperature.
The Chinese Herb Hai Tong Pi is the dried inner bark of the erythrina (or Indian coral) tree (Erythina variegata L., var. orientalis (L.) Merr.), a large deciduous tree with a thorny outer bark native to India and other parts of South Asia.
Hai Tong Pi dispels wind-dampness and unblocks peripheral channels and collaterals to treat bi zheng (painful obstruction syndrome) to address muscle aches, spasms and cramps, and low back pain. It is mild in its effects and needs to be used in formula with other herbs in formula for full effectiveness.
Hai Tong Pi kills parasites and relieves itching to treat scabies and other skin lesions.