Chinese Medicines

Contraindicated and Not Recommended Chinese Medicines

Among all Chinese medicines, 34 are contraindicated, not recommended, and used with caution in pregnancy. Although the occassional use of these Chinese medicines is noted, relevant clinical data are not available. Nevertheless, the experimental data in association with the adverse pregnancy outcomes are also very limited. (Please click for further evidence.)
English nameClassificationOther Clinical Applications
Obtuselef erycibe stemContraindicatedrheumatoid arthritis, sciatica, hemiplegia, bruises, swelling and pain
Common buried rubberContraindicateddysmenorrhea, postpartum amenorrhea
Ground beetleContraindicatedamenorrhea, bones and muscle injury
Prepared common monkshood mother rootContraindicatedsweating, muscle spasm, chronic diarrhea, muscle or joint pain and tightness, edema
LeechContraindicatedthrombosis, asthma, amenorrhea, abortion, bruises
Lilac daphne flower budContraindicatededema, ascites, ringworm
Chinese asafetidaContraindicatedparasites, purpura, epilepsy, hepatomegaly
Peking euphorbia rootContraindicatededema, ascites, phlegm retention, lymphatic tuberculosis
Pharbitis seedContraindicatededema, puffiness, phlegm retention, cough, roundworm, tapeworm
Xedoray rhizomeContraindicatedcervical cancer,  leukemia, liver cancer, hepatomegaly, splenomegaly
Pokeberry rootContraindicatededema, tympanites, sores and abscess
CentipedeContraindicatedepilepsy, spasm, scrofula, sores, arthritis, hemorrhoid, snake poison, scalding, leukemia, stroke
MuskContraindicatedcoma, angina, tumors and carbuncles, stillborns, seizures
CalomelContraindicatedscabies, tinea pruritus, sores and ulcers, impetigo, eczema, syphilis, edema, difficulty in urination and defecation
Fructus crotonisContraindicatedconstipation, abdominal distention and pain, ascites, phlegm retention, abscesses and ulcers
Birthwort fruitContraindicatedchronic cough and dyspnea
Gansui rootContraindicateddiuresis, furuncle and phyma
Caper euphorbia seedContraindicatedschistosomiasis ascites, snakebite
Sheeploitered azaleaContraindicatedrheumatoid arthritis, fractures, fungal infection
Strychnos seedContraindicatedrheumatoid arthritis, impotence, glycine encephalopathy, myasthenia gravis, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, migraine, menopausal syndromes, facial neuralgias, Raynaud's syndromes, Bell's palsy, tuberculosis, cervical erosion
Blister beetleContraindicatedcancer, fungal infection, lymphatic cancer
RabiagarContraindicatedtinea, scabies, ringworm, roundworm, phlegm, tumors, leukemia
Snow lotusNot Recommendedtumor, rheumatoid arthritis, impotence, irregular menses, retained placenta
Jack-in-the pulpit tuberPrecautiousstroke, paralysis, epilepsy, tetanus, tumors, arrhythmia, insect and snake bites
Trichosanthes kirilowii Precautiousdrain heat and generate fluids, clear and drain lung heat, transform phlegm, and moisten lung dryness, and resolve toxicity and expel pus
BorneolPrecautiousInduce resuscitation and refresh mind, clear heat and alleviate pain. Block pattern of coma. For swelling and pain in the throat, sores on the oral mucosa and the tongue.
Sodium SulfatePrecautiousconstipation, conjunctivitis, throat swollen and sore, breast tumor, lactation, parasites
Kusnezoff monkshood leafPrecautiouschronic muscle or joint pain and tightness, chest and abdominal pain, lower limb edema and coldness
Chinese honeylocust abnormal fruitPrecautiousstrokes, unconsciousness, epilepsy, phlegm retention, constipation, temperature burn, breast engorgement
Love-in-a-mistPrecautiouspalpitations, insomnia, cough
Monkshood branched rootPrecautioussweating, muscle spasm, chronic diarrhea, muscle or joint pain and tightness, edema
Sodium sulfate powderPrecautiousoral ulcer
Achyranthes bidentata Precautiousused in the treatment of aching back and knees and asthenia of the lower limbs; to treat hypertension, back pains, urine in the blood, menstrual pain, bleeding etc
Pinellia ternataNot Specificto treat phlegm in coughs and also as a treatment for more stubborn coughs. It was used in herbal formulas to warm the lungs, as a cure for nausea and vomiting and also to decrease the size of goiters and nodules.
References: Wang CC, Li L, Lau CBS, Leung PC, Fung KP. 2013. Pregnancy outcomes, embryonic and fetal development in maternal exposure to Chinese medicines. Birth Defect Res C 99, 275-291