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Ma Bo

English Name: lasiosphaera, puffball

Pharmaceutical Name: Lasiosphaera seu Calvatia

Medica Category: Heat-Clearing and Toxin-Eliminating Herbs

Properties: Ma Bo enters the Lung channel; it is acrid in nature and neutral to slightly cool in temperature.

What is Ma Bo?:

The Chinese Herb Ma Bo is the fruiting body (sporocarp) of the puffball mushroom (Lasiosphaera fenzlii Reich., Calvatia gigantean (Batsch ex Pers.) Lloyd. or Calvatia lilacina (Mont. et Berk.) Lloyd.). They are harvested when ripe in the late summer/early autumn. The hard skin is peeled off; it is then cut into cubes and pounded into powder for use as medicine.

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) Therapeutic Actions of Ma Bo:

Ma Bo clears heat-toxins from the upper body to benefit the lungs and throat. It is used in cases where sore throat and loss of voice are accompanied by cough w/blood coming up (i.e. heat and toxicity are damaging the collaterals of the Lung (impairing the qi mechanism) and forcing the blood out of the vessels).

Ma Bo can be use internally or topically to stop bleeding caused by excess heat driving blood out of the vessels.

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