English Name: gentiana
Pharmaceutical Name: Radix Gentianae
Medica Category: Heat-Clearing and Dampness-Drying Herbs
Properties: Long Dan Cao enters the Liver, Gallbladder, and Stomach channels; it is bitter in nature and cold in temperature.
The Chinese Herb Long Dan Cao is the dried roots of the Japanese Gentiana (Gentiana scabra), a small perennial plant with blue, tubular flowers that prefers the cooler conditions of shaded woodlands or a mountain meadow in Northern latitudes.
Long Dan Cao clears damp-heat in the Liver and Gallbladder channels (as well as the lower jiao) to address disorders with such clinical manifestations as jaundice, thirst, abdominal fullness, hypochondriac pain, lack of appetite, genital itching, leukorrhea (yellow with foul odor), and scanty, dark urine.
Long Dan Cao also sedates rising Liver heat/fire to address such symptoms as redness and swelling in the eyes, headaches, and fever.