Chinese Herbal Medicines for Stomach Pain

Stomach pain is also known as epigastric pain and refers to the symptoms of abdominal pain in the upper abdomen near the heart socket, accompanied by abdominal distension, anorexia, pantothenic acid, nausea, or vomiting.

Modern medicine believes that many factors cause stomach pain, including acute gastritis, chronic gastritis, gastric ulcer, anti-epidemic esophagitis, bile reflux gastritis, functional dyspepsia, duodenal ulcer, and gastric mucosal prolapse.

With the irregular life and diet of people, the incidence of stomach pain is also increasing year by year. Most people have experienced the pain of stomachache. There are different clinical treatment methods for stomach pain caused by different reasons.

In recent years, scholars have extensively carried out experimental research on the treatment of stomachache with Chinese herbs, and have summarized many Chinese herbs that can relieve stomachache.

Fu Ling (Poria)

Fu Ling also known as Poria is the sclerotium of Poria cocos, which is a medicinal fungus belonging to the family Polyporaceae. It initially appeared in <Shennong Ben Cao Jing> in the late Western Han Dynasty (about 100 BC).

Its water decoction can reduce gastric juice secretion and inhibit experimental gastric ulcers in rats.

In traditional Chinese medicine, it is often used to treat ectopic pregnancy, miscarriage, uterine fibroids, salpingitis, and chronic gastritis. At present, there are no reports in the literature that it has toxic effects.

Huang Qi (Radix Astragali)

Huang Qi commonly known as Radix Astragali is the root of Astragalus membranaceus (Fisch.) Bge.var.mongholicus(Bge.) or Astragalus membranaceus (Fisch.) Bge, which is a perennial herb belonging to the family Leguminosae. It is a relatively practical and common Chinese herbal medicine, which first appeared in <Shennong Ben Cao Jing> in the late Western Han Dynasty (about 100 BC).

It can reduce the incidence of gastric ulcers, reduce the area of ulcers, and inhibit experimental gastric ulcers in rats.

In traditional Chinese medicine, it is often used to treat hyperlipidemia, hyperglycemia, coronary heart disease, viral myocarditis, renal arterioles sclerosis, chronic hepatitis B, ectopic pregnancy, female perimenopausal syndrome, and dysfunctional uterine bleeding.

Modern animal experiments show that excessive use of it may cause paralysis of the limbs and difficulty breathing.

Mu Xiang (Radix Aucklandiae)

Mu Xiang commonly known as Radix Aucklandiae is the root of Aucklandia lappa, which is a perennial herb belonging to the family Compositae. It is a well-known traditional Chinese medicine, which first appeared in <Shennong Ben Cao Jing> in the late Western Han Dynasty (about 100 BC).

Costus lactone can significantly reduce the gastric mucosal ulcer index in rats, reduce the area of ulcers, inhibit gastric acid secretion, increase gastric juice pH, reduce gastric juice secretion and reduce pepsin activity.

In addition, it can treat indigestion, tenesmus, jaundice, loss of appetite, and acute bacillary dysentery. Overdose may cause dizziness, headache, abdominal discomfort, or drowsiness.

Ji Nei Jin (Endothelium Corneum Gigeriae Galli)

Ji Nei Jin commonly known as Endothelium Corneum Gigeriae Galli or Chicken Gizzard Lining is the gizzard lining of Gallus gallus domesticus, which is a vertebrate belonging to the family Phasianidae. It is animal medicine, which first appeared in <Shennong Ben Cao Jing> in the late Western Han Dynasty (about 100 BC).

It can activate related factors that protect the gastric mucosa and improve gastric mucosal damage.

In traditional Chinese medicine, it is often used to treat indigestion, urolithiasis, gallstones, nocturnal emission, urinary incontinence, atrophic gastritis, and gastrolithiasis. At present, there are no reports in the literature that it has toxic effects.

Wu Zhu Yu (Fructus Evodiae)

Wu Zhu Yu commonly known as Fructus Evodiae or Evodia Fruit is the nearly matured fruit of Euodia rutaecarpa, which is a deciduous shrub or tree belonging to the family Rutaceae. It is a relatively practical and common Chinese herbal medicine, which first appeared in <Shennong Ben Cao Jing> in the late Western Han Dynasty (about 100 BC).

Its polysaccharide can significantly reduce the degree of gastric mucosal damage in rats with gastric ulcers. Its lactone has a good therapeutic effect on both cold water stress type and pyloric ligation type gastric ulcer rats.

In traditional Chinese medicine, it is often used to treat acute pancreatitis, reflux esophagitis, hypertension, and bradyarrhythmias. Overdose may cause vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, headache, dizziness, chest tightness, blurred vision, or skin rash.

Cao Dou Kou (Semen Alpiniae Katsumadai)

Cao Dou Kou commonly known as Semen Alpiniae Katsumadai is the nearly ripe seed of Alpinia katsumadai, which is a perennial herb belonging to the family Zingiberaceae. It first appeared in <Lei Gong Pao Zhi Lun> (Master Lei’s Discourse on Processing of Chinese Materia Medica) in the Northern and Southern Dynasties(420 AD–589 AD).

Its volatile oil can reduce gastric juice acidity and pepsin activity, increase rat serum SOD activity, reduce MDA content, and inhibit acetic acid gastric ulcers in rats.

In traditional Chinese medicine, it is often used to treat indigestion, bloating, abdominal pain, loss of appetite, belching, vomiting, diarrhea, nephritis, and chronic pelvic inflammatory disease. At present, there are no reports in the literature that it has toxic effects.

Zhi Shi (Fructus Aurantii Immaturus)

Zhi Shi commonly known as Fructus Aurantii Immaturus or Immature Bitter Orange is the small young fruit of Citrus aurantium or Citrus sinensis, which is a small evergreen tree belonging to the family Rutaceae. It is a relatively practical and common Chinese herbal medicine, which first appeared in <Shennong Ben Cao Jing> in the late Western Han Dynasty (about 100 BC).

Its flavonoids can improve indomethacin-induced gastric ulcers in rats. Studies have found that its volatile oil reduces stomach and duodenal damage.

In traditional Chinese medicine, it is often used to treat functional dyspepsia, coronary heart disease, angina, gastric dilatation, visceral drooping, and bile reflux gastritis. At present, there are no reports in the literature that it has toxic effects.

Bai Ji (Rhizoma Bletillae)

Bai Ji commonly known as Rhizoma Bletillae is the stem tuber of Bletilla striata, which is a perennial herb belonging to the family Orchidaceae. It is a common hemostatic medicine, which first appeared in <Shennong Ben Cao Jing> in the late Western Han Dynasty (about 100 BC).

It has a significant inhibitory effect on acute stress ulcers, acetic acid injury ulcers, and pyloric ligation ulcers in rats, and can reduce the secretion of gastric acid and pepsin.

In addition, it can treat upper gastrointestinal bleeding, chronic colitis, ulcerative proctitis, oral mucositis, and traumatic bleeding. At present, there is no information that it can cause serious adverse reactions.

Bai Zhu (Rhizoma Atractylodis Macrocephalae)

Bai Zhu commonly known as Rhizoma Atractylodis Macrocephalae is the rhizome of Atractylodes macrocephala, which is a perennial herb belonging to the family Compositae. It is a relatively practical and common Chinese herbal medicine, which first appeared in <Shennong Ben Cao Jing> in the late Western Han Dynasty (about 100 BC).

Its polysaccharide can reduce the gastric ulcer index of rats, increase the activity of superoxide dismutase in gastric tissue, and reduce the content of malondialdehyde. Atractylenolide I can stimulate the migration and proliferation of intestinal epithelial cells, repair gastrointestinal mucosal damage, and treat enteritis and peptic ulcers.

In addition, it can treat otitis media, vomiting, nephrotic syndrome complicated by acute renal failure, and hyperlipidemia. Overdose may cause a drop in blood pressure, weakness, or anemia.