Prevention of Infections with Traditional Chinese Medicine

Date:2018-12-08 click:0

One of the fundamental concepts in traditional Chinese medicine is that "superior medicine prevents disease, and inferior medicine treats disease." Prevention of infectious disease is certainly no exception since bacteria and virus tend to adversely affect those who have weakened or compromised immune systems.


Traditional Chinese medicine consider infectious disease as wen bing (warm disease) and treat it with heat-clearing herbs. Many of these herbs are confirmed to have remarkable antibiotic effects, including antibacterial and antiviral. In addition to traditional diagnosis and treatment, the following herbs and formulas may be considered to more precisely target and treat infectious disease.


Classic formulas with antibiotic effect:

Yin Qiao San (Honeysuckle and Forsythia Powder)
Huang Lian Jie Du Tang (Coptis Decoction to Relieve Toxicity)
Long Dan Xie Gan Tang (Gentiana Decoction to Drain the Liver)
Pu Ji Xiao Du Yin (Universal Benefit Decoction to Eliminate Toxin)
Ba Zheng San (Eight-Herb Powder for Rectification)

Herbs that have antibacterial effect include:

Bai Tou Weng (Radix Pulsatillae)
Chuan Xin Lian (Herba Andrographis)
Huang Lian (Rhizoma Coptidis)
Hu Zhang (Rhizoma et Radix Polygoni Cuspidati)
Huang Bo (Cortex Phellodendri Chinensis)
Huang Qin (Radix Scutellariae)
Ku Shen (Radix Sophorae Flavescentis)
Pu Gong Ying (Herba Taraxaci)
Shan Dou Gen (Radix et Rhizoma Sophorae Tonkinensis)

Herbs that have antiviral effect include:

Ban Lan Gen (Radix Isatidis)
Da Qing Ye (Folium Isatidis)
Jin Yin Hua (Flos Lonicerae Japonicae)
Lian Qiao (Fructus Forsythiae)
Ye Ju Hua (Flos Chrysanthemi Indici)


Many herbs and formulas that tonify wei (defensive) qi have been shown to have marked effect to boost the immune system. Examples include:


Classic formulas with immunostimulant effect:

Shi Quan Da Bu Tang (All-Inclusive Great Tonifying Decoction)
Ren Shen Yang Ying Tang (Ginseng Decoction to Nourish the Nutritive Qi)
Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang (Tonify the Middle and Augment the Qi Decoction)
Si Jun Zi Tang (Four-Gentlemen Decoction)
Yu Ping Feng San (Jade Windscreen Powder)

Herbs with immunostimulant effect:

Dong Chong Xia Cao (Cordyceps)
Ren Shen (Radix et Rhizoma Ginseng)
Dang Shen (Radix Codonopsis)
Huang Qi (Radix Astragali)
Bai Zhu (Rhizoma Atractylodis Macrocephalae)
Treatment of Infectious Disease