Gou Teng - Gambir Vine Stems and Thorns

TCM Materia Medica

Gou Teng TCM Herb Classifications and Usages

The TCM herb "gou teng" which in english is Gou Teng herb"gambir vine stems and thorns", is categorized within the "herbs that extinguish wind and stop tremors" functional grouping. It is thought to enter the heart and liver channels and exhibits cool and sweet (gan) taste/temperature properties.

Dosages and preparations will vary according to each individual and the overall approach of a formula, but generally this herb has the following dosage and/or preparation guidelines:

  • Dosage: 6-15g

Of many possible clinical applications, it may be considered to influence the following issues/symptoms:

  • Extinguishes wind and alleviates spasms - spasms, muscle tremors, seizures.
  • Drains liver heat and pacifies liver yang - headaches, irritability, red eyes, dizziness.
  • Releases the exterior - fever, headaches, red eyes.

Gou Teng may potentially be used, in coordination with a well tailored formula (in most cases), to influence the following conditions: dizziness (vertigo), headache, irritability and/or tremor

While it may not always be included depending on the manufacturer or herbalist making the formula, gou teng is generally included in the following 6 formulas:

ViewBao Ji Wan (Protect and Relieve Pills)

Cramping and/or painful distension of the abdomen. Foul smelling belching or gas with diarrhea due to heat in the intestine. May alleviate some hangover symptoms. Also useful to treat food poisoni…

ViewGeng Nian An Wan (Peaceful Menopause)

Menopause symtpoms including hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, restlessness and anxiety as a result of yin deficiency.   Can be used for other yin deficient symtpoms such as tinnitus, dry skin…

ViewHui Chun Wan (Recovery Special Pill)

Most often used for childhood convulsions (possibly with wheezing, nausea, nighttime crying, vomiting, diarrhea, excessive mucus/saliva) or other conditions that involve fever, impaired or loss of …

ViewTe Xiao Zao Ren An Mian Wan (Peaceful Sleep Tablets)

Insomnia, vivid dreaming, nightmares. Acute emotional instability. May be used to treat convulsions or spasms that are caused by a combination of blood deficiency with wind.

ViewTian Ma Gou Teng Wan (Gastrodia and Uncaria Formula)

Headaches, vertigo, dizziness, tinnitis, floaters or blurry vision, insomnia as a result of liver yang rising.  Siezures, spasms, convulsions or other types of involuntary muscle activity due to liv…

ViewYi Gan Wan (Restrain The Liver Powder)

Anxiety, palpitations, easily frightened, alternating fevers/chills; heat from deficiency in the liver.Originally designed for Children who had issues such as anger, fright, fevers, insomnia, digesti…

As noted above, gou teng is within the herbs that extinguish wind and stop tremors functional group. All the herbs in this category are listed below.

(truncated intro "... for internal wind. results from liver and kidney imbalances - yin deficiency, ascendant liver yang, blood deficiency, high fevers. symptoms: headache, dizziness, blurred vision, tinnitus, irritability, vomiting, palpitations with anxiety…)".

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