Sticky menstrual blood according to Chinese Medicine

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Sticky menstrual blood 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 sticky menstrual blood 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 sticky menstrual blood is often associated with late period, scanty periods and pale menstrual blood in the pattern “Damp-Phlegm in the Uterus”. As you will see below, we have in record two patterns that can cause sticky menstrual blood.

Once identified, patterns are treated using medicinal herbs, acupuncture, and other therapies. In the case of sticky menstrual blood we’ve identified three 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 sticky menstrual blood.

The two "patterns of disharmony" that can cause sticky menstrual blood

In Chinese Medicine sticky menstrual blood is a symptom for 2 patterns that we have on record. Below is a small explanation for each of them with links for more details.

Coco-Grass Rhizomes (Xiang Fu) is the king ingredient for Cang Fu Dao Tan Wan, a formula used for Damp-Phlegm in the Uterus

Damp-Phlegm in the Uterus

Pulse type(s): Slippery (Hua)

In addition to sticky menstrual blood, other symptoms associated with Damp-Phlegm in the Uterus include late period, scanty periods and pale menstrual blood.

From a Western Medicine standpoint Damp-Phlegm in the Uterus is associated with health issues such as Late Menstruation, Scanty Menstruation or Absence Of Menstruation.

Damp-Phlegm in the Uterus is often treated with Cang Fu Dao Tan Wan, a herbal formula made of 8 herbs (including Coco-Grass Rhizomes - Xiang Fu - as a key herb). Cang Fu Dao Tan Wan belongs to the category of "formulas that dry dampness and transform phlegm", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Resolves Dampness and Phlegm".

Read more about Damp-Phlegm in the Uterus 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 sticky menstrual blood, other symptoms associated with Heat in Uterus Blood include anger, anxiety and dark urine.

From a Western Medicine standpoint Heat in Uterus Blood is associated with health issues such as Heavy Menstruation.

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 "formulas that clear heat from deficiency", 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

Three herbal formulas that might help with sticky menstrual blood

Xiang Sha Liu Jun Zi Tang

Source date: 1675 AD

Number of ingredients: 9 herbs

Key actions: Tonifies Spleen and Stomach Qi. Removes Dampness. Moves Qi. Alleviates pain.

Why might Xiang Sha Liu Jun Zi Tang help with sticky menstrual blood?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Damp-Phlegm in the Uterus' of which sticky menstrual blood is a symptom.

According to Chinese Medicine, Damp-Phlegm in the Uterus can contribute to many health issues, including Late Menstruation.

Read more about Xiang Sha Liu Jun Zi 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 sticky menstrual blood?

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

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

Read more about Qing Re Gu Jing Tang here

Xiong Gui Er Chen Tang

Source date: 1575 AD

Number of ingredients: 7 herbs

Key actions: Resolves Damp-Phlegm. Nourishes Blood.

Why might Xiong Gui Er Chen Tang help with sticky menstrual blood?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Damp-Phlegm in the Uterus' of which sticky menstrual blood is a symptom.

According to Chinese Medicine, Damp-Phlegm in the Uterus can contribute to many health issues, including Late Menstruation.

Read more about Xiong Gui Er Chen Tang here

The five Chinese Medicinal herbs most likely to help treat sticky menstrual blood

Why might Liquorice (Gan Cao) help with sticky menstrual blood?

Because Liquorice is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat sticky menstrual blood as a symptom, like Xiang Sha Liu Jun Zi Tang or Xiong Gui Er Chen Tang for instance.

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

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 Tangerine Peel (Chen Pi) help with sticky menstrual blood?

Because Tangerine Peel is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat sticky menstrual blood as a symptom, like Xiong Gui Er Chen Tang or Xiang Sha Liu Jun Zi Tang for instance.

Tangerine Peel is a Warm herb that tastes Bitter and Pungent. It targets the Lung and the Spleen.

Its main actions are: Warms the Spleen and regulates the Middle Burner Qi. Dries Dampness and disperses Phlegm from the Lungs and Middle Burner. Reduces the potential for Stagnation caused by tonifying herbs.

Read more about Tangerine Peel here

Why might Baikal Skullcap Root (Huang Qin) help with sticky menstrual blood?

Because Baikal Skullcap Root is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat sticky menstrual blood as a symptom, like Qing Re Gu Jing Tang or Huai Jiao Wan for instance.

Baikal Skullcap Roots is a Cold herb that tastes Bitter. It targets the Gallbladder, the Heart, the Large intestine, the Lung, the Small intestine and the Spleen.

Its main actions are: Expels Heat and Dampness. Clears Upper Burner Heat, especially of the Lung. Clears Heat and stops reckless movement of Blood. Clears pathogenic Heat which is upsetting the fetus. Cools the Liver, reducing Liver Yang rising syndrome.

Read more about Baikal Skullcap Roots here

Why might Dong Quai (Dang Gui) help with sticky menstrual blood?

Because Dong Quai is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat sticky menstrual blood as a symptom, like Xiong Gui Er Chen Tang or Huai Jiao Wan for instance.

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

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 Sanguisorba Root (Di Yu) help with sticky menstrual blood?

Because Sanguisorba Root is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat sticky menstrual blood as a symptom, like Qing Re Gu Jing Tang or Huai Jiao Wan for instance.

Sanguisorba Roots is a Cool herb that tastes Bitter and Sour. It targets the Stomach, the Large intestine and the Liver.

Its main actions are: Reduces Heat in the Blood, drains Damp-Heat and stops bleeding. Stops diarrhea. Applied topically it reduces inflammation and aids in wound healing.

Read more about Sanguisorba Roots here

Conditions associated with sticky menstrual blood

Late menstruation Heavy menstruation