Tonifying Blood

2 Blood tonic (4)

Blood deficiency: head, color, mind, menstruation, pulse, tongue

Herbs: Shudihuang, Danggui, Shaoyao, Erjiao, etc.

Possible side effects: produce dampness, impede spleen qi

Si Wu Tang (four ladies?)

Four Substance Decoction


si wu tang - dang gui

Indications: Chong/Ren meridians deficiency (Blood deficiency and stagnant blood)

—- Irregular menstruation with scanty flow, dysmenorrhea, amenorrhea, lower abdominal or periumbilical pain, and PMS 

—- Dizziness, fatigue, tinnitus, blurred vision, palpitations, and pale nails and complexion 

—- Painful and hard abdominal masses, threatened miscarriage, and lochioschesis. 

T- Pale, purple, or dusky tongue, P- wiry and thin, or choppy and thin 


Now: basic formula for

all kinds of blood deficiency

most kinds of irregular menstruation

Functions: nourish blood and invigorate blood

Shudihuang 12g—-sweet/slightly warm (moist/greasy), nourish blood not moving

Danggui 10g —- nourish and invigorate blood                   moving

Baishao 12g —- astringe yin and nourish blood                  not moving

Chuanxiong 8g —- regulate qi within blood                     moving

Applications: Irregular menstruation and anemia


This formula is heavy and cloying and should not be used in cases with loose stool, poor appetite, and indigestion due to Spleen Qi/Yang deficiency 

Do not use in cases of acute or severe blood loss. 


Which herb in this formula most easily impedes SP qi? Why?


Dang Gui Bu Xue Tang

Decoction with Chinese Angelica Combination to Tonify Blood


Functions: To tonify Qi and promote the production of blood.

Indications: Blood deficiency and floating of Yang due to fatigue and deficiency of source Qi.

—- Hot sensation of the body, red face, thirst, desiring to drink, surging, big and deficient pulse; or anemia and heat manifestation in post-labor or menstruation period, headache

Huangqi 30g – in heavy dosage, replenish/invigorate SP/LU qi, (qi produces blood)

Danggui  6g sweet, pungent, warm, nourish blood, harmonize ying

Applications: Anemia, uterine bleeding, post-partus bleeding and fever and purulent abscesses.

Cautions: 1. Heat manifestation here is due to the deficiency of blood leading to the failure of Yang, so heat here should not be regarded as a sign of common fever. Cold or cool herbs should be avoided as such formulas may worsen the disease. 2. This formula is contraindicated for a person with Yin deficiency manifested by afternoon fever.



A patient has hot sensation of the body, red face, thirst, desiring to drink, and surging, big and deficient pulse. Which formula do you prefer? Why? Should you have to ask more questions for symptom in order to get detailed information about the syndrome?

a) Baihu Tang 

b) Qinghao Biejia Tang

c) Danggui BuXie Tang


Gui Pi Tang

Decoction to Strengthen the Spleen and Heart


gui pi tang - student

Functions: To tonify Qi and blood, strengthen the spleen and heart.


1) Spleen and heart deficiency (Qi and blood deficiency) due to fatigue or over-thinking.

—- Palpitation, forgetfulness, insomnia, lassitude, poor appetite, night sweating, fever, sallow complexion, pale tongue with thin and white coating, thready and weak pulse;

2) Qi deficiency and weakness of the spleen which fail in controlling the blood

—- Qi deficiency and weakness of the spleen which fail in controlling the blood, functional uterine bleeding, etc.

Ren shen 15 g, Huang qi 30 g, Bai zhu 30 g, Gan cao 8 g —- Warm/tonify SP qi

Dang gui 3g —- Nourish LV, replenish blood

Fu ling (Fu shen)30 g, Suan zao ren 30 g, Long yan rou 30 g —- Sweet, nourish HT, tranquilizing mind

Yuan zhi 3 g —- Communicate HT and KI, tranquilizing mind

Mu xiang 15 g —- Regulate qi, activate SP; Prevent damp generation and impairment of SP

Method Used: Once the herbs are mixed, six grams of Fresh ginger (Shengjiang) and three pieces of Jujube (Dazao) are added to the herbs which are then cooked with water by decoction.

Applications: Irregular menstruation, functional uterine bleeding, anemia and neurasthenia.



In Guipi Tang, which herb is used for preventing generation of dampness?

In Buzhong Yinqi Tang, which herb is used for regulate/active SP qi?

  1. Chenpi (Jupi)
  2. Xiangfu
  3. Muxiang

In both Guipi Tang and Buzhong Yinqi Tang, herbs as Renshen, Huangqi, Baizhu and Gancao are used for tonify SP qi?


Zhi Gan Cao Tang

Decoction of Baked Licorice Combination

炙甘草汤 (加减复脉汤)

zhi gan cao tang - arrhythmia

Functions: To tonify Qi and replenish Yin.


1) Palpitation and intermittent pulse due to Qi and blood deficiency.

     —- Palpitation, intermittent pulse, fatigue, shortness of breath,  pale tongue without coating.

2) Consumptive lung disease – dry cough, or little sputum mixed with blood, thin body, shortness of breath, irritability, insomnia, spontaneous sweating or night sweating, dry mouth, constipation, or fever, weak and rapid pulse.

Zhigancao 12 g, Renshen 6 g, Dazao 5-10 pcs —- Tonify qi of SP/HT

Sheng di huang 30 g, Mai men dong 10 g, E jiao 9 g, Ma zi ren 10 g —- Sweet, moist, nourish yin, and HT blood, moisten LU and generate fluid
Sheng jiang 9 g, Gui zhi 9 g, Wine 10ml —- Pungent, warm, promote yang qi, activate blood

Herbs tonifying qi + herbs nourishing yin —- warm, but not dry, promote qi/blood circulation, unblock bl vessels

Method Used: Except for the Donkey-hide gelatin (Ejiao), all the other herbs are cooked with water by decoction. Then the Donkey-hide gelatin (Ejiao) is added to a cup of boiling water. Finally, these two decoctions are mixed with 10 ml of white wine.

Applications: Arrhythmia.

Modifications: Severe Qi deficiency. Add: Astragalus (Huangqi).

Cautions: Prolonged use of this formula may cause edema. In cases where edema exists, the dosage of Baked licorice (Zhigancao) should be reduced.



  • Why is wine used in this formula?
  • Is Zhigancao in this formula used for harmonizing others?
  • What is main symptom that this formula is indicated?


3 Both Qi and blood tonic (3) 

Ba Zhen Tang

Decoction of Eight Treasure Ingredients


ba zhen tang = Sijunzi Tang + Siwu Tang 

Functions: To tonify Qi and blood.

Indications: Qi def and blood def

Method Used: Three slices of Fresh ginger (Shengjiang) and two pieces of Jujube (Dazao) added to the eight treasure ingredients are cooked with water by decoction.


Shi Quan Da Bu Tang


Ba Zhen Tang + Huangqi/Rougui

Functions: To warm and tonify qi and blood

Indications: Qi def / blood def + (KI) yang def

Ren Shen Yang Rong (Ying) Tang


ren shen yang rong wan - lin dai yu

dang gui, bai shao, shu di huang

ren shen, fu ling, bai zhu, gan cao

huang qi, rou gui (or gui zhi), ju pi, wu wei zi, yuan zi

Ren Shen Yang Rong (Ying) Tang = shi quan da bu (Chuanxiong (is removed) + Wuweizi/Yunzhi/Chenpi

Functions: To tonify Qi/blood, to nourish HT and tranquilized mind

Indications: constitutional weakness due to consumptive disease