Si Wu Tang (Four Treasure Decoction) is a very basic yet very powerful formula.
The main function of Si Wu Tang is for tonifying blood.
Blood in the definition in TCM means more than what flows inside the blood vessels. In TCM our body runs on the dynamic reaction of Yin and Yang like moon and Sun. All the substance and functions in the body can all be categorized into these two aspects. Yin and Yang depends on each other and at the same time controls each other.
Blood falls on the yin side. “Women belong to yin . The physiological function of the women is based on the blood.” Because of our physiology of pregnancy , labor and menstrual flow, we experience more “excess in Qi , but deficient in blood.”
Thus Si Wu Tang is considered a major formula for women.
First we look at the menstrual flow and its physiology in TCM. In the monthly course of menstruation, blood needs to fill in the Chong and Ren meridian. In the case of blood deficiency , which usually accompanies excess of Qi, the menses can be scanty and in consistent. Because in TCM , blood is stored in the liver and can be easily stagnant because of its yin nature.
The composition of Si Wu Tang is Dang Gui (Angelica sinensis), Bai Shao(White Peony Root) , Di Huang (Chinese Foxglove Root), Chuan Xiong (Szechuan Lovage Roo). The main herbs in this formula is Dang Gui as the emperor herbs that dominates the whole formula. Dang gui also has the name of ” the herbs promotes the qi in the blood.”
When the blood is not filling up the meridian and vessels , it can show as no lust on the skin , weakness and fatigue , scanty menstruation. When the blood is deficient in the channel , like not enough water filling up the water pipe, nutrients can’t be delivered to the organs and then stagnation can occur. Any stagnation can lead to pain. That’s why a lot of time , women with blood deficiency can present with menstrual cramps. PMS can be one of the indication for Si Wu Tang , as blood related closely to liver and spleen. When blood is not filled and stored in the liver, liver’s function as unobstructed force can be compromised. The emotion dominated by the Liver is anger. That’s why a lot of time, anger and irritability can be a major symptoms in PMS.
Over all, Si Wu Tang is a very basic yet versatile formula as in women’s problem. In the differentiation of blood deficiency or liver deficiency , this formula can be a good help.
*Disclaimer: this article is served as a reference for TCM practitioner and herbalists. If you have any questions on this formula, please consult your specialists , or leave us a comment below.