The rhizome of the anemarrhena plant is used to treat fever and other ailments that Chinese medicine practitioners associate with yin deficiency, a disorder distinguished by what Chinese medicine regards as heat signs; these include symptoms such as fever, chills, headache, thirst, sweating and a rapid pulse. Anemarrhena is classified in traditional Chinese medical practice as bitter and cold. It grows in China's Hebei province, where it is harvested in autumn. A high-quality specimen of this herb appears large, thick, and hard and has a white cross section.
Taken internally for:
Anemarrhena is available in bulk at Chinese pharmacies, Asian markets and Western health food stores. Practitioners sometimes recommend a preparation of the herb cooked in salt water to treat the kidneys.
Combinations: In a mixture with phellodendron, anemarrhena is used to treat night sweating, dizziness and vertigo. The herb is also combined with fritillaria to treat coughing and bringing up phlegm. Chinese herbalists mix anemarrhena with scrophularia and Chinese foxglove root for ulcers in the mouth.
Check with a Chinese medicine practitioner for information on appropriate dosages and other herbal combinations.