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Carthami Flos
Medicinal Group Blood-activating menstruation regulating medicinal

Dried flower of Carthamus tinctorius L. (Fam. Compostiae)

Nature and Flavors pungent; warm
Meridian Affinity Liver, Heart

To activate blood and stimulate menstrual discharge, dissipate stasis and relieve pain



Part used



Amenorrhea, dysmenorrhea; retention of lochia; abdominal masses; traumatic injuries, sores and ulcers with swelling and pain

Research Findings

  • Safflower injection effectively improved hibernating myocardial function. [1]
  • The combined therapy of hooking therapy and safflower injection apparently relieves pain and clinical symptoms of lumbar disc herniation. [2]
  • Long-term ingestion of safflower seed extract  in humans could help to improve arterial stiffness.[3]
  • Safflower Injection could effectively prevent and treat the vascular crisis after free flap transplantation.[4]
  • Honghua Injection can inhibit the expression of Glycoprotein (GP) IIb/IIIa receptors by preventing aggregation of platelets. [5]
  • Safflower yellow seems to be effective and safe in the treatment of acute ischemic stroke.[6]
  • Danhong Injection (extracted from Radix Salviae Miltiorrhizae and Flos Carthami tinctorii) is conducive to the recovery of patients with traumatic intracranial hematoma. [7]


Use with caution during pregnancy

Report on adverse effect

Increased menstrual flow may occur [8]

Dizziness, skin eruptions and transient urticaria have been reported [8]



  1. Zheng CZ, Xian YQ, Chen J, Xu YH, Shi Q, Wang YH, Ju HN. (2014). Clinical research of safflower injection on hibernating myocardial revascularization. Zhongguo Zhong Yao Za Zhi. , 39(7):1311-4.
  2. Gao Z, Liu X, Yu W. (2015). Efficacy of hooking therapy and safflower injection on lumbar disc herniation and the impact on IL-6 and NO in the patients. Zhongguo Zhen Jiu. , 35(12):1231-4.
  3. Suzuki K, Tsubaki S, Fujita M, Koyama N, Takahashi M, Takazawa K. (2010 ). Effects of safflower seed extract on arterial stiffness. Vasc Health Risk Manag. , 3;6:1007-14. doi: 10.2147/VHRM.S13998.
  4. Shi NN, Cheng CS, Zha ZQ. ( 2011). Clinical study of safflower injection in treating and preventing the vascular crisis after free flap transplantation. Zhongguo Zhong Xi Yi Jie He Za Zhi. , 31(10):1322-7.
  5. Zhu YF, Luo HM, Deng ZL, Fu DY, Yao W, Dai J. (2012). Effects of the Chinese patent medicine, Honghua Injection, on platelet glycoprotein IIb/III a receptors in patients with acute coronary syndrome: a randomized controlled trial. Zhong Xi Yi Jie He Xue Bao. , 10(3):318-23.
  6. Fan S, Lin N, Shan G, Zuo P, Cui L. (2014). Safflower yellow for acute ischemic stroke: A systematic review of randomized controlled trials. Complement Ther Med. , 22(2):354-61. doi: 10.1016/j.ctim.2014.01.001. Epub 2014 Jan 9.
  7. Sun M, Zhang JJ, Shan JZ, Zhang H, Jin CY, Xu S, Wang YL. (2009). Clinical observation of Danhong Injection (herbal TCM product from Radix Salviae miltiorrhizae and Flos Carthami tinctorii) in the treatment of traumatic intracranial hematoma. Phytomedicine. , 16(8):683-9. doi: 10.1016/j.phymed.2009.03.020. Epub 2009 May 8.
  8. Chang HM, But PPH, eds. Pharmacology and applications of Chinese materia medica. Vol. 1. Singapore, World Scientific, 1986.

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