Stephania tetrandra is a Chinese medicinal herb also known as han-fang-chi or fen-fang-qi. In the Chinese Pharmacopoeia, the herb is recommended for treating general symptoms such as inflammation, fever, and pain; however, it also has been used extensively to manage water retention and edema, eliminate stagnant bronchial mucous, and detoxify. For the past 50 years, however, stephania has been used in China principally as an agent to control blood pressure. Although its use in humans has been limited to China, stephania has been studied in animal models in laboratories throughout the world, and many of its pharmacological properties are relatively well described.
Stephania contains various chemical compounds, including glycosides and volatile oils. In Japan, stephania is used as a pain reliever, and to treat inflammation and stiffness of the shoulders and back. In China, stephania is used mainly to treat Bellís palsy, abdominal pain and asthma, and as a diuretic.
Dosage and administration: 5-10g, decocted in water and taken orally.