Spleen not controlling Blood

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At a glance

Key attributes

Chinese name: 脾不统血      Pinyin name: Pí Bù Tǒng Xuè

Pattern nature: Empty


Common symptoms: Fatigue Lassitude Weak Limbs Depression Loose stools and seven other symptoms

Pulse type(s): Weak (Ruo), Fine (Xi)

Tongue description: Pale


Treatment principle: Tonify Spleen Qi, stop bleeding.

Common formulas: Gui Pi Tang


When Spleen Qi is Deficient, which is a pre-requesite in this case, the Spleen cannot fulfill its function of holding Blood in the vessels.

This is why bleeding symptoms appears all over the place: under the skin, in the stools, the urine or from the Uterus.

Diagnosing Spleen not controlling Blood

Pulse type(s): Weak (Ruo) or fine (Xi)

Tongue description: Pale

Main symptoms: Fatigue Lassitude Weak Limbs Depression Loose stools Bloody urine Poor appetite Bloody stools Pale complexion Abnormal uterine bleeding Blood spots under the skin Slight abdominal distention after eating

Diagnosis commentary: The key characteristic symptoms of this pattern are the Fine Pulse, the Pale tongue and the various bleeding-related symptoms (blood spots under the skin, bloody urine or stools, excessive uterine bleeding).  In general if one sees bleeding as a symptom, roughly half the cases are due to Spleen not controlling Blood (a Deficient pattern) and half to Heat in the Blood (an Excess pattern).

Treating Spleen not controlling Blood

Treatment principle

Tonify Spleen Qi, stop bleeding.

Herbal formulas used to treat Spleen not controlling Blood

Gui Pi Tang

Source date: 1529 AD

Number of ingredients: 12 herbs

Key actions: Tonifies and nourish Qi and Blood. Tonifies Heart and Spleen.

Formula summary

Gui Pi Tang is a 12-ingredient Chinese Medicine formula. Invented in 1529 AD, it belongs to the category of formulas that tonify Qi and Blood.

Besides Spleen not controlling Blood, Gui Pi Tang is also used to treat Qi Deficiency or Blood Deficiency.

Read more about Gui Pi Tang

Diet recommendations

The best step one can take to avoid or mitigate Spleen not controlling Blood is to adopt proper dietary habits. As such one should avoid the excessive consumption of cold and raw foods (like salads or cold drinks), eating at irregular times or chronically eating too much or too little.

Less easy to do, since excessive pensiveness and worry are key contributing factors, efforts should be made to steer clear of those emotions.

Lastly if you live in a damp environment (the exterior air or inside your home), try to do something to avoid overexposing yourself to dampness. The Spleen loathes Dampness.