Chi Shao - Red Peony Root

TCM Materia Medica

Chi Shao TCM Herb Classifications and Usages

The TCM herb "chi shao" which in english is Chi Shao herb"red peony root", is categorized within the "herbs that invigorate blood" functional grouping. It is thought to enter the liver and spleen channels and exhibits bitter (ku), cool and sour (suan) taste/temperature properties.

Dosages and preparations will vary according to each individual and the overall approach of a formula, but generally this herb has the following dosage and/or preparation guidelines:

  • Dosage: 4.5-9g

Of many possible clinical applications, it may be considered to influence the following issues/symptoms:

  • Invigorates blood, dispels stasis (stronger than Mu Dan Pi) - dysmenorrhea, amenorrhea, abdominal pain and masses, traumatic pain associated with swelling, early stages of abscesses and boils.
  • Clears heat, cools the blood (especially for excess heat in the blood) - for heat entering the blood level with fever, purple tongue, skin blotches, bleeding, gyn issues.
  • Clears liver fire - for red swollen, painful eyes.

Chi Shao has some precautions to be considered (see our precautions list).

Our clinical staff have made the following notes, regarding chi shao:

  • Compare with Mu Dan Pi, Bai Shao.
  • Used for bleeding conditions due to excess-heat in the blood or febrile disease conditions.

 

Chi Shao may potentially be used, in coordination with a well tailored formula (in most cases), to influence the following conditions: abdominal pain, amenorrhea (absence of menstruation), dysmenorrhea (menstrual pain - cramps), furuncles (boils) and/or trauma

While it may not always be included depending on the manufacturer or herbalist making the formula, chi shao is generally included in the following 12 formulas:

ViewBu Yang Huan Wu Tang Wan (Great Yang Restoration Pills)

Fatigue, weakness, with pale complexion due to chronic qi and blood deficiency. Hemiplegia, slurred speech or involuntary muscle control due to blockage of the channels and collaterals.

ViewBu Yang Huan Wu Wan (Tonify Yang To Restore Five Tenths Decoction)

Post-stroke recovery when stasis is from qi and yang deficiency - post-stroke symptoms, paralysis, atrophy of the limbs, drooling, slurred speech, etc.  Other potential uses with the correct underly…

ViewDan Shen Huo Xue Wan (Red Sage Root Decoction for Promoting Blood Circulation)

Phlebitis, generally chronic.

ViewFu Fang Zhen Zhu An Chuang Wan (Margarite Acne Pills)

Cystic acne, pimples. Skin irritation due to damp heat - eczema, boils, carbuncles, etc. With appropriate diagnosis can be used for acute dermatitis, poison ivy/oak.

ViewGe Xia Zhu Yu Wan (Drive Out Blood Stasis Below The Diaphragm Decoction)

For blood stasis below the diaphgram - abdominal masses, liver and spleen masses/swelling, colitis. A range of liver disorders are possibly applicable - cirrhosis, hepatic hemangioma, hepatitis, jau…

ViewGui Zhi Fu Ling Wan (Cinnamon and Poria Teapills)

For abdominal masses such as uterine cysts, ovarian cysts, benign tumors. May be used when blood stagnation symptoms appear during pregnancy. Uterine bleeding especially if the color is dark.

ViewShao Fu Zhu Yu Wan (Abdominal Stasis Relief Pills)

Qi and blood stagnation in the lower jiao - lower abdominal masses, fibroids, ovarian cysts, endometriosis. Fertility issues in both men and women with the right underlying signs - amenorrhea, dysme…

ViewTong Qiao Huo Xue Wan (Unblock the Orifices and Invigorate the Blood Decoction)

Blood stagnation particularly in the head - migraines and/or headaches with other sensory factors - auras, sound sensitivity, etc. Dizziness, tinnitus, hair loss - with underlying blood stagnation s…

ViewWu Lin San Wan (Gardenia & Hoelen Formula)

Painful urination with cloudy or dark urine due to heat. Possibly blood in the urine -bright red blood not occult.

ViewXian Fang Huo Ming Yin Wan (Immortals Formula For Sustaining Life)

Generally for short-term use with early stage heat toxins - sores, carbuncles, boils, styes, acne.  Swollen and painful skin lesions with other heat signs (chills/fever).  Breast abscesses, mastitis…

ViewXue Fu Zhu Yu Wan (Blood Stasis Relief Pills)

Qi and Blood stagnation - pain, cardiovascular issues, physical organ issues. Coronary artery disease, angina and other cardiovascular issues. Hepatitis and other liver function issues. Migraines,…

ViewZhong Feng Hui Chun Wan (Stroke Recovery Pills)

Bell's Palsy, facial paralysis, slurry of speech, difficulty swallowing. Stroke, Transient Ischemic Attack.

As noted above, chi shao is within the herbs that invigorate blood functional group. All the herbs in this category are listed below.

(truncated intro "... for blood stasis - pain, abscesses and ulcers, abdominal masses. )".

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