Excessive menstrual discharge according to Chinese Medicine

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Excessive menstrual discharge can be the consequence of several so-called “patterns of disharmony” in Chinese Medicine.

Chinese Medicine sees the body as a system, not a sum of isolated parts. A "pattern" is when the system's harmony is disrupted, leading to symptoms or signs that something is wrong (like excessive menstrual discharge here). It is similar to the concept of disease in Western Medicine but not quite: a Western disease can often be explained by several Chinese patterns and vice-versa.

A pattern often manifests itself in a combination of symptoms that, at first glance, do not seem necessarily related to each others. For instance here excessive menstrual discharge is often associated with dizziness, feeling of heat and restlessness in the pattern “Damp-Heat”. As you will see below, we have in record four patterns that can cause excessive menstrual discharge.

Once identified, patterns are treated using medicinal herbs, acupuncture, and other therapies. In the case of excessive menstrual discharge we’ve identified four herbal formulas that may help treat patterns behind the symptom.

We’ve also selected below the five medicinal herbs that we think are most likely to help treat excessive menstrual discharge.

The four "patterns of disharmony" that can cause excessive menstrual discharge

In Chinese Medicine excessive menstrual discharge is a symptom for 4 patterns that we have on record. Below is a small explanation for each of them with links for more details.

Korean Mint (Huo Xiang) is the king ingredient for Huo Xiang Zheng Qi San, a formula used for Damp-Heat

Damp-Heat

Pulse type(s): Soggy (Ru)

In addition to excessive menstrual discharge, other symptoms associated with Damp-Heat include dizziness, feeling of heat and restlessness.

From a Western Medicine standpoint Damp-Heat is associated with health issues such as Menstrual Cramps, Intermenstrual Bleeding or Abnormal Vaginal Discharge.

Damp-Heat is often treated with Huo Xiang Zheng Qi San, a herbal formula made of 11 herbs (including Korean Mint - Huo Xiang - as a key herb). Huo Xiang Zheng Qi San belongs to the category of "formulas that transform dampness and harmonize stomach", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Releases the Exterior".

Read more about Damp-Heat here

Water Buffalo Horns (Shui Niu Jiao) is the king ingredient for Xi Jiao Di Huang Tang, a formula used for Heat in the Blood

Heat in the Blood

Pulse type(s): Rapid (Shu)

Tongue color: Red

Heat in the Blood (or Blood-Heat) refers to a condition whereby Heat, as a so-called "Pernicious Influence", entered the Blood. This invasion tends to accelerate Blood flow (leading to a faster pulse) and to manifest itself in various types of bleeding as well as other symptoms.

In addition to excessive menstrual discharge, other symptoms associated with Heat in the Blood include dizziness, scanty periods and irritability.

From a Western Medicine standpoint Heat in the Blood is associated with health issues such as Early Menstruation, Abnormal Uterine Bleeding or Heavy Menstruation.

Heat in the Blood is often treated with Xi Jiao Di Huang Tang, a herbal formula made of 4 herbs (including Water Buffalo Horns - Shui Niu Jiao - as a key herb). Xi Jiao Di Huang Tang belongs to the category of "formulas that clear nutritive-level heat", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Treats severe fevers and Heat in the Blood system".

Read more about Heat in the Blood here

Baikal Skullcap Roots (Huang Qin) is the king ingredient for Qing Re Gu Jing Tang, a formula used for Heat in Uterus Blood

Heat in Uterus Blood

Pulse type(s): Rapid (Shu), Wiry (Xian)

In addition to excessive menstrual discharge, other symptoms associated with Heat in Uterus Blood include red face, anxiety and dark urine.

Heat in Uterus Blood is often treated with Qing Re Gu Jing Tang, a herbal formula made of 11 herbs (including Baikal Skullcap Roots - Huang Qin - as a key herb). Qing Re Gu Jing Tang belongs to the category of "", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Clears Empty Heat".

Read more about Heat in Uterus Blood here

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

Stagnant Liver-Qi turning into Fire

Pulse type(s): Rapid (Shu), Wiry (Xian)

Tongue coating: Yellow coating

Tongue color: Red

In addition to excessive menstrual discharge, other symptoms associated with Stagnant Liver-Qi turning into Fire include dizziness, irritability and red face.

From a Western Medicine standpoint Stagnant Liver-Qi turning into Fire is associated with health issues such as Menstrual Cramps or Spontaneous Flow Of Breast Milk.

Stagnant Liver-Qi turning into Fire is often treated with Xuan Yu Tong Jing Tang, a herbal formula made of 10 herbs (including White Peony Roots - Bai Shao - as a key herb). Xuan Yu Tong Jing Tang belongs to the category of "formulas that invigorate blood and dispel blood stagnation", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Pacifies the Liver".

Read more about Stagnant Liver-Qi turning into Fire here

Four herbal formulas that might help with excessive menstrual discharge

Dan Zhi Xiao Yao San

Source date: 2002 AD

Number of ingredients: 8 herbs

Key actions: Clears Liver Fire from Stagnant Liver Qi.

Why might Dan Zhi Xiao Yao San help with excessive menstrual discharge?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Stagnant Liver-Qi turning into Fire' of which excessive menstrual discharge is a symptom.

According to Chinese Medicine, Stagnant Liver-Qi turning into Fire can contribute to many health issues, including Menstrual Cramps.

Read more about Dan Zhi Xiao Yao San here

Xiao Yao San

Source date: 1107 AD

Number of ingredients: 6 herbs

Key actions: Harmonizes the function of Liver and Spleen. Relieves Liver Qi stagnation. Nourishes the Blood.

Why might Xiao Yao San help with excessive menstrual discharge?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Damp-Heat' of which excessive menstrual discharge is a symptom.

According to Chinese Medicine, Damp-Heat can contribute to many health issues, including Menstrual Cramps.

Read more about Xiao Yao San here

Xi Jiao Di Huang Tang

Source date: 650 AD

Number of ingredients: 4 herbs

Key actions: Treats severe fevers and Heat in the Blood system. Removes Blood Stagnation.

Why might Xi Jiao Di Huang Tang help with excessive menstrual discharge?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Heat in the Blood' of which excessive menstrual discharge is a symptom.

According to Chinese Medicine, Heat in the Blood can contribute to many health issues, including Early Menstruation.

Read more about Xi Jiao Di Huang Tang here

Qing Re Gu Jing Tang

Source date: 1988

Number of ingredients: 11 herbs

Key actions: Clears Empty Heat. Tonifies the Kidney Yin. Stops bleeding. Supplies Body Fluids.

Why might Qing Re Gu Jing Tang help with excessive menstrual discharge?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Heat in Uterus Blood' of which excessive menstrual discharge is a symptom.

Other symptoms characteristic of Heat In Uterus Blood include red face, anxiety and dark urine.

Read more about Qing Re Gu Jing Tang here

Acupuncture points used for excessive menstrual discharge

The five Chinese Medicinal herbs most likely to help treat excessive menstrual discharge

Why might White Peony Root (Bai Shao) help with excessive menstrual discharge?

Because White Peony Root is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat excessive menstrual discharge as a symptom, like Dan Zhi Xiao Yao San or Xiao Yao San for instance.

White Peony Roots is a Neutral herb that tastes Bitter and Sour. It targets the Spleen and the Liver.

Its main actions are: Tonifies the Blood and preserves the Yin. Nourishes the Liver and assists in the smooth flow of Qi. Regulates the meridians and eases the pain.

Read more about White Peony Roots here

Why might Dong Quai (Dang Gui) help with excessive menstrual discharge?

Because Dong Quai is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat excessive menstrual discharge as a symptom, like Dan Zhi Xiao Yao San or Xiao Yao San for instance.

Dong Quai is a Warm herb that tastes Pungent and Sweet. It targets the Spleen, the Heart and the Liver.

Its main actions are: Tonifies the Blood. Lubricates the Intestines. Relieve constipation. Promotes circulation and dispels Bi Pain. Reduce Dysmenorrhea and help with irregular menstruation.

Read more about Dong Quai here

Why might Mudan Peony Bark (Mu Dan Pi) help with excessive menstrual discharge?

Because Mudan Peony Bark is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat excessive menstrual discharge as a symptom, like Dan Zhi Xiao Yao San or Xi Jiao Di Huang Tang for instance.

Mudan Peony Bark is a Cool herb that tastes Bitter and Pungent. It targets the Heart, the Kidney and the Liver.

Its main actions are: Cools the Blood, activates Blood circulation and resolves Blood stasis.

Read more about Mudan Peony Bark here

Why might Liquorice (Gan Cao) help with excessive menstrual discharge?

Because Liquorice is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat excessive menstrual discharge as a symptom, like Dan Zhi Xiao Yao San or Xiao Yao San for instance.

Liquorice is a Neutral herb that tastes Sweet. It targets the Spleen, the Stomach, the Heart and the Lung.

Its main actions are: Tonifies the Basal Qi and nourishes the Spleen Qi. Clears Heat and dispels toxicity. Moistens the Lungsexpel phlegm and stop coughing. Relieves spasms and alleviates pain. Harmonizes and moderates the effects of other herbs.

Read more about Liquorice here

Why might Unprepared Rehmannia (Di Huang) help with excessive menstrual discharge?

Because Unprepared Rehmannia is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat excessive menstrual discharge as a symptom, like Qing Re Tiao Xue Tang or Qing Re Gu Jing Tang for instance.

Unprepared Rehmannia is a Cold herb that tastes Sweet. It targets the Heart, the Kidney and the Liver.

Its main actions are: Expels Heat by Cooling Blood. Tonifies Yin by promoting Fluid production. Soothes the Heart by calming Blazing Fire. Cools and nourishes.

Read more about Unprepared Rehmannia here

Conditions associated with excessive menstrual discharge

Menstrual cramps Early menstruation Abnormal uterine bleeding