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Quan gua lou used in Chinese medicine, United Kingdom, 2005

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Known in Chinese as Quan gua lou, this preparation is also known as Semen et fructus trichosanthis. It is used in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) to loosen the chest as a treatment for colds or breathing difficulties, to moisten the intestines and to improve blood circulation. In TCM, the taste of a herb or plant is thought to indicate its use. Quan gua lou is also used with other ingredients to treat a wide range of conditions. The package was purchased in London from Beijing Tong Ren Tang, a maker of Traditional Chinese Medicines.

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    Glossary: Traditional Chinese Medicine

    Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is a medical tradition originating in China, but now used worldwide. Treatments include herbal medicine, massage and acupuncture, which are combined to create a therapy tailored to the patient.

    Glossary: herbal medicine

    the use of plant or plant extracts for medicinal purposes in order to improve the body's natural functions and restore balance. Herbal medicines are given in many forms (liquids, infusions, tablets, topical preparations, etc.) and form part of an increasing number of complementary medical therapies