Pharmaceutical Name: Hirudo seu whitmaniae
Zoological Name: 1. Whitmania pigra (Whitman). 2. Hirudo nipponica Whitman. 3. Whitmania acranulata (Whitman)
Common Name: Leech
Source of Earliest Record: Shennong Bencao Jing
Part Used: The leeches are caught from May to June or in autumn. They are killed and dried in the sun, and then pounded into powder or carbonized.
Natural Properties & Taste: Salty, bitter, neutral and slightly toxic
1. To invigorate blood and remove stagnation.
2. To promote menstruation.
1. Amenorrhea or abdominal and epigastric masses caused by blood stagnation. Leech (Shuizhi) is used with Peach seed (Taoren), Burreed tuber (Sanleng) and Chinese angelica root (Danggui).
2. Chest pain, abdominal pain and constipation caused by blood stagnation due to external injury. Leech (Shuizhi) is used with Pharbitis seed (Qianniuzi) and Rhubarb (Dahuang) in the formula Duoming Dan.
Dosage: 3-6 g. 0.3-0.5 g for baked powder
Cautions & Contraindications: This substance is contraindicated during pregnancy.