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A wide range of herbs for pain conditions are discussed, with detailed information on their safe clinical application. Aconitum spp. (aconite, fuzı) and a formula featuring it, Gosha-jinki-gan (Niu ´ Che She`nQı`Wa´n), are particularly good examples of powerful analgesics that are far too little used in North American prescribing. The global use of various species of aconite is particularly compelling. However, this herb should only be recommended by experienced clinicians (as with most of the other herbs discussed herein). Similarly, Clematis spp. (clematis, virgin’s bower) and Anemone spp. (pasque flower) of various types are used for pain around the world. Actaea racemosa (black cohosh) is yet another analgesic from the Ranunculaceae family (along with aconite, clematis, and pasque flower). Corydalis yanhusuo (corydalis, ya´n hu ´ suo) and its American cousin Corydalis aurea (golden smoke) are opium family plants discussed for pain relief. Other diverse analgesic herbs discussed include Bryonia alba (white bryony), Bryonia cretica ssp. dioica (Cretan or red bryony), capsaicin, and Cannabis sativa (cannabis, marijuana). Finally, herbs that both relax skeletal muscle and reduce pain are described, including Piper methysticum (kava), Pedicularis bracteosa (bracted lousewort), Stachys officinalis and Stachys betonica (wood betony), and Lobelia inflata (lobelia).

Author: Eric Yarnell