Latin Name: Moschus

Pinyin Name: Shexiang

Origin

Medicinal musk is the dried secretion obtained from the male musk gland, traditionally called fragrant sac between the umbilical cord and the testicle of Moschus moschiferus Linnaeus, Moschus sifanicus Przewalski, or Moschus moschiferus Linaeus, Cervidae. After capturing a wild musk deer, cut the musk fragrant sac off the body, dry it in the shade. Dried fragrant sac is habitually called “hair sac musk”, open the sac, appears “the musk kernel”. The musk kernel can be directly obtained from the musk fragrant sac of the domestic musk deer and dried in the shade or in and air-tight desiccator.

Distribution

It is mainly produced in Sichuan, Tibet and Yunnan, less commonly produced in Hubei, Shaanxi, Gansu, Qinghai, Xinjiang, Inner Mongolia, and the Northeastern provinces.

Nature,Taste and Channel Tropism

It is acrid in taste and warm in nature. Its therapeutical action is related to the channels of

Caution

Do not prescribe it to the pregnant women.

Musk

CHARACTERISTICS

Hair sac musk

It is an oblate or elliptical cystid, 3-7cm in diameter, and 2-4cm in thickness. On the side where opening of the sac is situated are the cortices which are brown in colour and smooth to some extent with dense white or grayish-brown short hair arranged around the opening. On the other side are purplish-brown membranes of layers, which are slightly wrinkled and resilient, occasionally muscular fibres are found. After the sac is brown or grayish-brown in colour and translucent; the inner layer is brown in colour, within the inner layer, musk kernels of granular or powder form, small amount of vellus hair and scaled pieces of inner membranes are contained. The scaled pieces of inner layer of membrane is customarily called “silver scales”.

Musk kernels

The musk kernels which are taken from wild musk are soft in texture, lubricious and loose. The granular kernel is habitually called “dang men zi”, which is irregularly spherical or granular in shape. The surface, with few spotted wrinkles, is purplish-black, lubricious and luminous. The cross section is darkish-brown or yellowish-brown. The kernels taken from domestic musk are granular, short rod-like and irregular spherical in shape. The surface is rough, purplish-black or dark brown, greasy and slightly lustrous. Small amount of hair and scaled pieces of inner membranes are sometimes mixed in the kernels. The fragrance is strong and peculiar, the taste is slightly hot, bitter and salty.

 

ACTIONS AND INDICATIONS

1.Inducing resuscitation and restoring consciousness.

It is used for coma and spasm in the course of febrile diseases, apoplexy, phlegm syncope, syncope resulting from disorder of qi, and other consciousness loss syndromes of excess type.

2.Promoting blood circulation to relieve swelling.

 

It is efficacious in the treatment of traumatic injury, accumulation of blood stasis, general pains, sore throat, carbuncles and boils.

3.Restoring menstrual flow and removing obstruction in the channels.

It is efficacious in the treatment of mass in the abdomen, amenorrhea, retention of dead fetus or placenta, etc.

ADMINISTRATION AND DOSAGE

Usually made into pills or powder, not made into decoction, 0.03-0.1 gram daily. It may be externally used, accordingly.

 

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