Bai Tou Weng – Chinese Pulsatilla Root – Radix Pulsatillae

Bai Tou Weng

English Name: Chinese pulsatilla root

Literal Translation: “white-headed gentleman”

Pharmaceutical Name: Radix Pulsatillae

Medica Category: Heat-Clearing and Toxin-Eliminating Herbs

Properties: Bai Tou Weng enters the Large Intestine channel; it is bitter in nature and cold in temperature.

What is Bai Tou Weng?:

The Chinese Herb Bai Tou Weng is Chinese pulsatilla root (Pulsatilla chinensis (Bge.) Regel), a small, perennial herb that blooms in the spring with purple flowers with tiny, fuzzy white hairs. Native to Northern China, Korea, and parts of Siberia, it grows in dry grassy places and forest margins on rocky hillsides and mountain slopes. The roots are harvested in the fall or late winter/very early spring and dried for use as medicine.

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) Therapeutic Actions of Bai Tou Weng:

Bai Tou Weng clears damp-heat toxins and cools the blood in the Large Intestine channel to treat damp-heat diarrhea and dysentery accompanied with incomplete bowel movements/tenesmus and abdominal pain, and bleeding (with Qin Pi in the formula Bai Tou Weng Tang).

Bai Tou Weng has antibiotic properties and is useful in treating amoebic dysentery.