While many prescriptions have an English name that is a translation of the original Chinese name, a pinyin rendition of the name is also appropriate. For example, 四物汤 could be translated as Four Substances Decoction (Si Wu Tang) or Si Wu Decoction.

Common translations for modes of prescriptions include:

汤 Decoction

饮 Liquid

丸 Pill

水丸 Water Pill

丹 Special Pill, elixir

散 Powder

膏:抹于皮肤的用 ointment (较透明), cream (不透明);膏贴用 plaster; 喝的 syrup

药酒 Medicated Wine

English Names for Common Prescriptions

艾附暖宫丸Mugwort and Prepared Aconite Pill for Warming the Womb (Ai Fu Nuan Gong Wan )

补中益气汤 Tonify the Middle and Augment Qi Decoction (Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang)

加减生脉散 Modified Generate the Pulse Powder (Jia Jian Sheng Mai San)

Also, Modified Sheng Mai Powder

加味二陈汤 Augmented Two Cured Decoction (Jia Wei Er Chen Tang)

Also, Augmented Er Chen Decoction

六味地黄丸 Six Ingredient Pill with Rehmannia (Liu Wei Di Huang Wan)

麻黄汤 Ephedra Decoction

青龙汤 Green Dragon Decoction (Qing Long Tang)

逍遥散 Rambling Powder (Xiao Yao San)

For medicinals that needed special treatment, one would use the following terminology

包 Package for boiling

先下 Preboil (this medicinal) before adding the rest of the medicinals

后下 Add just before removing from fire

冲 Add to decoction just before ingesting

For example:

菟丝子 Semen Cuscuta Chinesis 10gm Package for Boiling

石膏先下 Gypsum 30gm Preboil 30 Minutes Before Adding Other Medicinals

钩藤后下 Ramulus Uncariae cum Uncis 15gm Add 5 Minutes Before Removing From Fire

鹿茸粉 Corni Cervi Parvum powder 3gm Add to Decoction Just Before Ingesting