Herbal Identification: The Clinical Implications of an Ancient Art

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Herbal IdentificationThe Clinical Implications of an Ancient Art
The art of identifying genuine, high-quality medicinal materials has been a concern of Chinese herbal medicine practitioners for thousands of years. The herbs used in Chinese medicine have long been traded across vast geographic distances, and challenges related to adulteration have plagued practitioners since ancient times. Consequently, the field of herbal pharmacy has gradually accumulated a sophisticated range of organoleptic techniques to allow practitioners to differentiate herbal quality using traditional, experience-based methods. By gaining familiarity with commonly confused herbs and the basics of quality discernment, practitioners can maximize clinical efficacy and avoid problems related to misidentification and confusion.
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Author Eric Brand
JCM Issue RCHM Spring 2015
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