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Niu Huang
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Niu Huang (Calculus Bovis)——Shen Nong Ben Cao Jing (Shen Nong’s Herbal)

  1. Niu Huang
  2. Calculus Bovis
  3. Bezoar
  4. 犀黄
  5. Xi Huang
  6. 牛黃
  7. 犀黃

The Processing of 牛黄


The stone in gallbladder, bile duct, hepatic duct of Bos taurus domesticus Gmelin. or Bubalus bubalus Linnaeusde of family Bovidae.


Northeast, northwest and north of China.


Collected during whole year.

The actual smell and taste

Fragrance, with bitter taste first then sweet taste with cool sensation, easily crushing when chewed, without sticking tooth.

Best quality

With complete, buffy, crisp and clear quality and with delicate striation of cross-section.


Kill the cow and find stone in the gallbladder, take the stone from the bile, get ride off the membrane of the stone, then dry it in the shade; grind into fine powder for pills or powder.

The Effect of 牛黄


Bitter, cool; liver and heart meridians entered.


Extinguish wind and stop spasm, resolve phlegm for resuscitation, clear heat and relieve toxicity.


A. Stirring of wind by extreme heat

Being bitter and cool with liver and heart meridians entered property, it can clear heart and liver, also extinguish wind and stop spasm. It is fit for intense heat of epidemic warm diseases, generation of wind by extreme heat, infantile convulsions due to phlegm-heat, coma with high fever, spasm and convulsions, often combined with heat-clearing and toxicity-relieving herbs and wind-extinguishing and spasm-stopping herbs, such as Huang Lian, Zhi Zi, and Gou Teng, etc.

B. Coma due to heat blockage

It is good at clearing heart heat, relieving toxicity and resolving phlegm for resuscitation. It is fit for coma due to inward invasion of intense heat into pericardium or inward invasion of epidemic warm diseases heat into pericardium, and coma due to clouding of pericardium by congestion of phlegm-heat in some diseases including wind stroke, infantile convulsions, and epilepsy and so on. It can be used singly in powder to dissolve in Zhu Li for orally taking. It is also combined with herbs to clear heart heat for resuscitation. For instance, it is combined with She Xiang, Bing Pian. Yu Jin and Zhi Zi, etc., in An Gong Niu Huang Wan from Wen Bing Tiao Bian.

C. Heat-toxin syndromes including swelling and pain in the throat, abscess, and deep-rooted boil

With good actions of clearing heat and relieving toxicity, it can be singly used for both internal and external application. It also can be combined with herbs to reinforce action of clearing heat and relieving toxicity. For swelling and pain in the throat, sores on the oral mucosa and the tongue, it is often combined with Huang Qin and Xuan Shen and so on. For swelling and pain in the throat, ulcer in throat, it is blown to throat with Zhen Zhu in powder. For abscess and deep-roared boil, it is often combined with toxicity-relieving and swelling-relieving herbs and blood-activating and accumulation-dissipating herbs. For instance, it is combined with She Xiang, Ru Xiang and Mo Yao and so on in Xi Huang Wan from Wai Ke Quan Sheng Ji (Life-Saving Manual of Diagnosis and Treatment of External Diseases).

Dosage and Administrations

Take 0.15~0.35 g for pills or powder. Take proper dose for external application and spread local place with fine powder.


It should be used with cautions for pregnant women.