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Handbook of Formulas in Chinese Medicine

406 pages
180 illustrations and photos
Smyth-sewn softcover
ISBN:  0-939616-84-X


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Handbook of Formulas in Chinese Medicine

Volker Scheid
Andrew Ellis

Handbook of Formulas in Chinese Medicine is a concise, visual reference to over 180 of the most important herbal formulas in Chinese medicine. The book is designed to provide a snapshot of the formulas and help the reader take in key information at a glance.

Each formula is presented as a two-page spread. On the left is a drawing of a person showing an aspect that is typical of the type of patient for whom the formula might be prescribed. The drawing is labelled with key symptoms. Under the drawing is a list of ingredients followed by basic information: actions, main pattern, key and secondary symptoms, tongue, pulse and abdomen. This can be absorbed in just a few moments.

Additional detail is set forth in clinical notes, and other formulas with similar indications are discussed for purposes of comparison.

On the right page is a full display of the composition of the formula. Each of the ingredients is color coded to show its taste and temperature, and the overall nature of the formulaŚwarming, cooling, neutral etc.Ścan be seen at a glance. The role that each ingredient plays in the formula (chief, deputy, assistant, envoy) as well as its actions are also shown.

An introduction discusses how different types of processing affect the functions of particular herbs, and there is a helpful introduction to the Japanese approach to abdominal diagnosis and its value in prescribing herbs. A formula index (by pinyin and English common name) and an index of patterns and key symptoms are included.


"I wish this book had been published while I was studying! It would have been a wonderful book to learn from. The color coding and deconstructed format make it a useful book to have on hand."
Davina Mercuri, The Lantern

"The Handbook of Formulas in Chinese Medicine is a neat and sharp reference tool for two types of practitioner: those with a busy clinic who are in need of a quick reference guide, and students or new practitioners wanting learning aids and checks on their recently acquired knowledge."
Sarah Price, The Journal of Chinese Medicine


  • Introduction
        Table 1: Common Methods of Processing Herbs
        Table 2: Herbs that are Commonly Processed
  • The Formulas
  • Index of Formulas by Pinyin
  • Index of Formulas by English Common Name
  • Index of Patterns and Key Symptoms

    Other titles by: Volker Scheid
    Chinese Herbal Medicine: Formulas & Strategies (Portable 2nd Edition)
    Currents of Tradition in Chinese Medicine 1626 to 2006
    Eastland Herb - Chinese Herbal Medicine: Materia Medica, Formulas & Strategies
    Other titles by: Andrew Ellis
    A Walk Along the River: Transmitting a Medical Lineage through Case Records and Discussions
    Chinese Herbal Medicine: Formulas & Strategies (Portable 2nd Edition)


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