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Astragalus 16 is based on traditional prescriptions originally used for severe lung diseases, such as pneumonia and tuberculosis. These disorders were thought to involve the combination of qi deficiency, deficiency fire, and stagnated qi circulation. Therefore, the formula includes qi tonics, herbs for clearing deficiency fire. The two herbs for alleviating coughing-aster and platycodon-also have the general use of directing the therapy to the upper body and providing additional tonification. This formula is likely to be used for people who do not have tuberculosis, perhaps for pneumonia, emphysema, and bronchitis, as well as non-lung disorders, such as menopausal syndrome in women with qi deficiency and tendency to experience lumps or swellings. The selection of Astragalus 16 would be based on the finding of qi deficiency and deficiency heat as significant aspects of the disorder. The traditional formulas of similar design, such as Chin-chiu and Tortoise Shell Formula, Astragalus and Tortoise Shell Formula, and Astragalus and Atractylodes Combination, are today applied to treating bronchial infections taht occur soon after experiencing the common cold or influenza.