Goldthread rhizomes (Huang Lian) Cinnamon bark (Rou Gui)

Jiao Tai Wan

Chinese: 交泰丸

Pinyin: Jiāo Tài Wán

Other names: Grand Communication Pill, Coptis and Cinnamon Formula

Number of ingredients: 2 herbs

Formula category: Formulas that nourish the Heart and calm the Mind

Conditions for which it may be prescribed: HypertensionNervous exhaustionAutonomic dystonia

Main actions: Restores the functional communication between the Heart and the Kidneys

Source date: 1522 AD

Source book: Comprehensive Medicine According to Master Han

Jiao Tai Wan is a 2-ingredient Chinese Medicine formula with Goldthread Rhizomes (Huang Lian) as a principal ingredient.

Invented in 1522 AD, it belongs to the category of formulas that nourish the Heart and calm the Mind. Its main action is that it restores the functional communication between the Heart and the Kidneys.

In Chinese Medicine health conditions are thought to arise due to "disharmonies" in the body as a system. These disharmonies are called "patterns" and the very purpose of herbal formulas is to fight them in order to restore the body's harmony.

In this case Jiao Tai Wan is used by TCM practitioners to fight patterns like Heart and Kidney Yin Deficiency or Disharmony between Heart and Kidneys caused by Kidney Yang Deficiency. From a Western Medicine standpoint, such patterns can give rise to a range of conditions such as nervous exhaustion, autonomic dystonia or hypertension for instance.

On this page, after a detailed description of each of the two ingredients in Jiao Tai Wan, we review the patterns and conditions that Jiao Tai Wan helps treat.

The two ingredients in Jiao Tai Wan

Huang Lian is a king ingredient in Jiao Tai Wan. Like the name indicates, it means it has more power than other ingredients in the formula.

1. Goldthread Rhizomes (Huang Lian)

Part used: Dried rhizome

Nature: Cold

Taste(s): Bitter

Meridian affinity: GallbladderSpleenStomachHeartLarge intestineLiver

Category: Herbs that clear Heat and dry Dampness

Huang Lian clears pathogenic Heat from the Heart and thereby calms the Mind. By doing so, the ability of the Kidneys to foster a sense of inner rootedness and strength is facilitated so the normal functional relationship between those two Organs is restored. With the anxiety of the Heart and Mind quelled, the Yin is no longer threatened, Kidney Yin is able to ascend and Heart Yin is nourished.

Learn more about Goldthread Rhizomes (Huang Lian)

Rou Gui is an assistant ingredient in Jiao Tai Wan. This means that it either serves to reinforces the effect of other ingredients or it moderates their toxicity.

2. Cinnamon Bark (Rou Gui)

Part used: Dried stem bark

Nature: Hot

Taste(s): PungentSweet

Meridian affinity: SpleenHeartKidneyLiver

Category: Herbs that warm the Interior and/or expel Cold

Rou Gui is acrid and hot.  It tonifies the Gate of Life to assist the Yang. Its warmth enters the Blood to open the vessels and facilitate the Blood movement. It also stimulates the Qi dynamic and transformation throughout the whole body.

Learn more about Cinnamon Bark (Rou Gui)

Conditions and patterns for which Jiao Tai Wan may be prescribed

It's important to remember that herbal formulas are meant to treat patterns, not "diseases" as understood in Western Medicine. According to Chinese Medicine patterns, which are disruptions to the body as a system, are the underlying root cause for diseases and conditions.

As such Jiao Tai Wan is used by TCM practitioners to treat two different patterns which we describe below.

But before we delve into these patterns here is an overview of the Western conditions they're commonly associated with:

Nervous exhaustion Autonomic dystonia Hypertension

Again it wouldn't be correct to say "Jiao Tai Wan treats nervous exhaustion" for instance. Rather, Jiao Tai Wan is used to treat patterns that are sometimes the root cause behind nervous exhaustion.

Now let's look at the two patterns commonly treated with Jiao Tai Wan.

The Heart is a so-called "Zang" Organ. Learn more about the Heart in Chinese Medicine

Heart and Kidney Yin Deficiency

Pulse type(s): Overflowing (Hong), Rapid (Shu), Empty (Xu)

Tongue color: Red, Red tip

Tongue shape: Cracked

Symptoms: Anxiety Insomnia Tinnitus Dizziness Poor memory Palpitations Night sweats Restlnessness Dream disturbed sleep Spontaneous and nocturnal emissions

Jiao Tai Wan is sometimes prescribed by TCM practitioners to treat Heart and Kidney Yin Deficiency. This pattern leads to symptoms such as palpitations, insomnia, poor memory and night sweats. Patients with Heart and Kidney Yin Deficiency typically exhibit overflowing (Hong), rapid (Shu) or empty (Xu) pulses as well as a red, red tip tongue.

Also called "Kidneys and Heart not Harmonized", this pattern occurs when Kidney Yin is Deficient and cannot nourish the Heart Yin which thus becomes Deficient. It results in a flaring up of Empty-Heat in the Heart with accompanying symptoms such as mental restlessness, insomnia, dream disturbed... read more about Heart and Kidney Yin Deficiency

The Heart is a so-called "Zang" Organ. Learn more about the Heart in Chinese Medicine

Disharmony between Heart and Kidneys caused by Kidney Yang Deficiency

Pulse type(s): Rapid (Shu), Fine (Xi)

Tongue coating: Partial absence of coating

Tongue color: Red

Symptoms: Anxiety Insomnia Irritability Restlnessness Coolness of the lower limbs Severe and continuous palpitations

Jiao Tai Wan is sometimes prescribed by TCM practitioners to treat Disharmony between Heart and Kidneys caused by Kidney Yang Deficiency. This pattern leads to symptoms such as irritability, restlnessness, severe and continuous palpitations and coolness of the lower limbs. Patients with Disharmony between Heart and Kidneys caused by Kidney Yang Deficiency typically exhibit rapid (Shu) or fine (Xi) pulses as well as a red tongue with partial absence of coating.

Learn more about Disharmony between Heart and Kidneys caused by Kidney Yang Deficiency

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