Yáng Dàn Tāng (陽旦湯) Yáng Dawn Decoction from the Jīn Guì Fāng Gē Kuò

As I am approaching close to 18 months of ardently working on the translation of the second volume of Chén Xiū-Yuàn’s Jīn Guì Fāng Gē Kuò (Formulas from the Golden Cabinet with Songs), I thought it was due time to share a small tidbit of the material.  I am getting quite close to finishing the text and it should be out sometime in the next few months.  

陽旦湯Jīn Guì Fāng Gē Kuò.jpg

Yáng Dàn Tāng

Yáng Dawn Decoction

治產後中風續續數十日不解頭微疼惡寒時時有熱心下悶乾嘔汗出 ,雖久陽旦症續在者可與之。  即桂枝湯增桂加附。  坊本謂加黃芩者未知《傷寒論》太陽篇中已明其方孫真人及各家俱誤。  桂枝湯見《傷寒論》。

A treatment for post-partum wind strike that remains unresolved for several tens of days with, a mild headache, aversion to cold, frequent heat effusion, oppression below the heart, dry retching, and sweating. Even though (the condition) has persisted for a long time, yáng dàn tāng signs are still present, and can be given. (This formula) is guì zhī tāng with increased guì zhī and the addition of fù zǐ.

An old block-printed version of the text refers to this formula as (guì zhī tāng) with the addition of huáng qín, but it is unknown whether this is the same tài yáng formula as in the Shāng hán lùn. Master Sūn Sīmiǎo and various others believed it to be so (for which) they were mistaken. For guì zhī tāng see the Shāng Hán Lùn.

 Commentary by (Chén) Yuánxī 男元犀按:

頭痛發熱、 惡寒汗出太陽表症也。  心下悶者太陽水邪彌漫心下而作悶也。  陽旦湯即桂枝湯倍桂枝加附子。  雖産後數十日不解其邪仍在於太陽之經故仍用桂枝湯解太陽之表邪加桂以化膀胱之水氣加附子以溫固水臟使經臟氣化則內外之邪出矣。  《傷寒論》桂枝加附子治漏汗加桂治氣從少腹上衝心去芍治胸滿俱有明文可據。  孫真人以桂枝湯加黃芩爲陽旦湯其意以心下悶爲熱氣誤矣。  夫有熱氣則當心煩今日心下悶則非熱可知矣。  況微惡寒時時有熱乾嘔汗出爲太陽桂枝湯之的症。  蓋太陽底面便是少陰續續至數十日不解顯系少陰之君火微而水寒之氣盛寒氣上淩陽位是以爲心下悶之苦。  故取桂枝湯增桂以扶君主之陽加附子以鎮水陰之逆使心陽振水臟溫則上逆之陰邪不攻而自散矣。

Headaches, heat effusion, aversion to cold, and sweating are symptoms associated with a tài yáng exterior pattern. (With) oppression below the heart, tài yáng water evils pervade (the area) below the heart and cause oppression. Yáng dàn tāng is guì zhī tāng with double the guì zhī and the addition of fù zǐ. Although there is a lack of resolution ten days post partum, evils are still located in the tài yáng channel, and it is for this reason that guì zhī tāng is used to resolve exterior evils in the tài yáng. Guì zhī is increased in order to transform water qì in the bladder.  Fù zǐ is added to the formula to warm and secure the water viscus, enabling the transformation of qì in the channels and viscera, and ensuring the expulsion of evils in both the interior and exterior. In the Shāng Hán Lùn, guì zhī jiā fù zǐ tāng is used to treat leaking sweat; increasing guì zhī treats surging qì from the lesser abdomen into the heart, and removing sháo yào treats chest fullness. These (principles) are in accordance with the (original) writings. (According to) master Sūn (sīmiǎo), yáng dān tāng is guì zhī jiā huáng qín tāng, (as he felt that) oppression below the heart was due to hot qì; this is a mistake! Now if there were hot qì, then there would be heart vexation, (but) presently with the oppression below the heart, we know there is no heat!  Moreover, slight aversion to cold, and frequent heat (effusion), dry retching, and sweating, is a guì zhī tāng tài yáng presentation. In all (cases) of tài yáng, there is shào yīn at the bottom, and with continuous (wind strike) reaching ten days without resolution, there is a clear relation to the debilitation of shào yīn sovereign fire, with exuberance of cold water qì. Cold qì ascends and encroaches into the position of yáng, resulting in oppression below the heart. Therefore, guì zhī tāng with increased guì zhī, supports sovereign yáng, and with the addition of fù zǐ counterflow of water yīn is settled, heart yáng is vitalized, and the water viscus is warmed.  Then, ascending counterflow of yīn evils will not attack, and dissipate on their own!

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