Praying Mantis Egg-Cases (Sang Piao Shao) Dragon bones (Long Gu) Tortoise plastrons (Gui Ban) Ginseng (Ren Shen) Host-wood Poria (Fu Shen) Chinese senega roots (Yuan Zhi) Sweetflag rhizomes (Shi Chang Pu) Dong quai (Dang Gui)

Sang Piao Xiao San

Chinese: 桑螵蛸散

Pinyin: Sāng Piāo Shāo Sàn

Other names: Mantis Egg-Case Powder

Number of ingredients: 8 herbs

Formula category: Formulas that secure Essence and stop enuresis

Conditions for which it may be prescribed: DiabetesNeurosisEnuresis and four other conditions

  1. Regulates and tonifies the Heart and Kidneys
  2. Stabilizes the Essence
  3. Stops leakage

Contraindications: Contraindicated for patients with frequent urination associated with... Contraindicated for patients with frequent urination associated with inflammation and with burning sensation. see more

Source date: 1116 AD

Source book: Extension of the Materia Medica

Sang Piao Xiao San is a 8-ingredient Chinese Medicine formula with Praying Mantis Egg-Cases (Sang Piao Shao) as a principal ingredient.

Invented in 1116 AD, it belongs to the category of formulas that secure Essence and stop enuresis. Its main actions are: 1) regulates and tonifies the Heart and Kidneys and 2) stabilizes the Essence.

In Chinese Medicine health conditions are thought to arise due to "disharmonies" in the body as a system. These disharmonies are called "patterns" and the very purpose of herbal formulas is to fight them in order to restore the body's harmony.

In this case Sang Piao Xiao San is used by TCM practitioners to fight patterns like Bladder Deficient and Cold or Bladder Deficiency with Cold. From a Western Medicine standpoint, such patterns can give rise to a range of conditions such as pediatric enuresis, diabetes or neurosis for instance.

On this page, after a detailed description of each of the eight ingredients in Sang Piao Xiao San, we review the patterns and conditions that Sang Piao Xiao San helps treat.

The eight ingredients in Sang Piao Xiao San

Sang Piao Shao is a king ingredient in Sang Piao Xiao San. Like the name indicates, it means it has more power than other ingredients in the formula.

1. Praying Mantis Egg-Cases (Sang Piao Shao)

Part used: Dried egg capsule

Nature: Neutral

Taste(s): SaltySweet

Meridian affinity: KidneyLiver

Category: Herbs that stabilize and bind

Sang Piao Shao tonifies the Kidneys and Gate of Vitality, stabilizes the Essence, and stops leakage. It attacks both the root and branch of the pattern treated by this formula and is a specific medicinal for both enuresis in children and cloudy urine.

Learn more about Praying Mantis Egg-Cases (Sang Piao Shao)

Long Gu is a deputy ingredient in Sang Piao Xiao San. This means it helps the king ingredient(s) treat the main pattern or it serves to treat a coexisting pattern.

2. Dragon Bones (Long Gu)

Part used: The fossilized bone or vertebrae

Nature: Neutral

Taste(s): Sweet

Meridian affinity: HeartKidneyLiver

Category: Herbs that anchor and calm the Spirit

Long Gu helps the key ingredient (Mantis Egg-case) in binding up the Essence, calms the Mind, and steadies the Will.

Learn more about Dragon Bones (Long Gu)

Gui Ban is a deputy ingredient in Sang Piao Xiao San. This means it helps the king ingredient(s) treat the main pattern or it serves to treat a coexisting pattern.

3. Tortoise Plastrons (Gui Ban)

Part used: Carapace and plastron

Nature: Cool

Taste(s): SaltySweet

Meridian affinity: HeartKidneyLiver

Category: Tonic herbs for Yin Deficiency

In general Gui Ban's main actions are as follows: "Nourishes the Yin and holds down the Yang. Strengthens the Kidneys and strengthens the bones. Cools the Blood, stops uterine bleeding. Nourishes the Heart. Promotes Healing."

In the context of Sang Piao Xiao San, it is used because it enriches the Yin, subdues the Yang, and tonifies the Kidneys.

Learn more about Tortoise Plastrons (Gui Ban)

Ren Shen is an assistant ingredient in Sang Piao Xiao San. This means that it either serves to reinforces the effect of other ingredients or it moderates their toxicity.

4. Ginseng (Ren Shen)

Part used: Dried root

Nature: Warm

Taste(s): BitterSweet

Meridian affinity: SpleenHeartLung

Category: Tonic herbs for Qi Deficiency

Ren Shen strongly tonifies the source Qi. Strong source Qi is a prerequisite for a healthy mind. It also tonifies the Heart.

Learn more about Ginseng (Ren Shen)

Fu Shen is an assistant ingredient in Sang Piao Xiao San. This means that it either serves to reinforces the effect of other ingredients or it moderates their toxicity.

5. Host-Wood Poria (Fu Shen)

Part used: The part of the mushroom that is attached to the host-wood, dried

Nature: Neutral

Taste(s): Sweet

Meridian affinity: SpleenHeart

Category: Herbs that nourish the Heart and calm the Spirit

Fu Shen works together with Yuan Zhi (Chinese senega root) and Shi Chang Pu (Sweetflag rhizome) to calm the Spirit (Shen) and steady the Will. It also facilitates communication between the Heart Qi and the Kidneys.

Learn more about Host-Wood Poria (Fu Shen)

Yuan Zhi is an assistant ingredient in Sang Piao Xiao San. This means that it either serves to reinforces the effect of other ingredients or it moderates their toxicity.

6. Chinese Senega Roots (Yuan Zhi)

Part used: The dried root

Nature: Warm

Taste(s): BitterSweet

Meridian affinity: HeartKidneyLung

Category: Herbs that nourish the Heart and calm the Spirit

In general Yuan Zhi's main actions are as follows: "Calms the spirit. Expels Phlegm from the Heart orifices. Expels Phlegm from the Lungs. Diminishes abscesses."

Learn more about Chinese Senega Roots (Yuan Zhi)

Shi Chang Pu is an assistant ingredient in Sang Piao Xiao San. This means that it either serves to reinforces the effect of other ingredients or it moderates their toxicity.

7. Sweetflag Rhizomes (Shi Chang Pu)

Part used: Dried rhizome

Nature: Warm

Taste(s): Bitter

Meridian affinity: StomachHeartLiver

Category: Herbs that open the Orifices

In general Shi Chang Pu's main actions are as follows: "Opens the Orifices, awakens the Mind (Shen) and expels Wind-Damp Phlegm. Harmonizes the Earth element and dispels Damp. Applied internally or externally for Wind-Cold-Damp painful obstruction."

Learn more about Sweetflag Rhizomes (Shi Chang Pu)

Dang Gui is an assistant ingredient in Sang Piao Xiao San. This means that it either serves to reinforces the effect of other ingredients or it moderates their toxicity.

8. Dong Quai (Dang Gui)

Part used: Dried root

Nature: Warm

Taste(s): PungentSweet

Meridian affinity: SpleenHeartLiver

Category: Tonic herbs for Blood Deficiency

Dang Gui nourishes the Blood and Yin. Together with the other ingredients in this formula, it regulates and tonifies the Qi and Blood, which is essential for revitalization to occur.

Learn more about Dong Quai (Dang Gui)

Conditions and patterns for which Sang Piao Xiao San may be prescribed

It's important to remember that herbal formulas are meant to treat patterns, not "diseases" as understood in Western Medicine. According to Chinese Medicine patterns, which are disruptions to the body as a system, are the underlying root cause for diseases and conditions.

As such Sang Piao Xiao San is used by TCM practitioners to treat two different patterns which we describe below.

But before we delve into these patterns here is an overview of the Western conditions they're commonly associated with:

Pediatric enuresis Diabetes Neurosis Uterine prolapse Autonomic dystonia Enuresis Nocturia

Again it wouldn't be correct to say "Sang Piao Xiao San treats pediatric enuresis" for instance. Rather, Sang Piao Xiao San is used to treat patterns that are sometimes the root cause behind pediatric enuresis.

Now let's look at the two patterns commonly treated with Sang Piao Xiao San.

The Bladder is a so-called "Fu" Organ. Learn more about the Bladder in Chinese Medicine

Bladder Deficient and Cold

Sang Piao Xiao San is sometimes prescribed by TCM practitioners to treat Bladder Deficient and Cold. This pattern leads to symptoms such as frequent urination, pale and abudant urination, incontinence and enuresis. Patients with Bladder Deficient and Cold typically exhibit deep (Chen) or weak (Ruo) pulses.

This pattern is similar to Kidney Yang Deficiency or Kidney Qi not Firm, except with more Bladder related symptoms. It can derive from Kidney Yang Deficiency like it can be a precursor for it, both patterns are intrinsically linked.

This is because the Bladder derives its Qi from Kidney Yang to... read more about Bladder Deficient and Cold

The Bladder is a so-called "Fu" Organ. Learn more about the Bladder in Chinese Medicine

Bladder Deficiency with Cold

Pulse type(s): Deep (Chen), Weak (Ruo)

Tongue coating: Thin white coating

Tongue color: Pale

Symptoms: Dizziness Incontinence Forgetfulness Disorientation Lower back pain Feeling of cold Frequent urination White urethral discharge Urine the color of rice water (grey and cloudy)

Sang Piao Xiao San is sometimes prescribed by TCM practitioners to treat Bladder Deficiency with Cold. This pattern leads to symptoms such as urine the color of rice water (grey and cloudy), disorientation, forgetfulness and incontinence. Patients with Bladder Deficiency with Cold typically exhibit deep (Chen) or weak (Ruo) pulses as well as a pale tongue with thin white coating.

Learn more about Bladder Deficiency with Cold

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