What Are The Side Effects of Dong Quai?
Black Cohosh Ginkgo Biloba Dong Quai Ginseng Red Clover Soy Vitex Macafem
Black Cohosh
Black cohosh grows in the woods of eastern North America
Ginkgo Biloba
Traditionally used in Chinese medicine for thousands of years.
Dong Quai
Dong Quai is often referred to as "the female ginseng"
The Chinese word "rénshén" means "man root" in English
Red Clover
Originates from Asia, parts of Northern Africa, and Central Europe
Traditionally used in the Orient as a source of protein and medicine
Vitex agnus-castus is also called chaste tree
Originates from the Andean mountains of Perú

What Are The Side Effects of Dong Quai?

While Dong quai may be a safer alternative to HRT in treating menopausal symptoms, it comes with its own risks and side effects. You should consult with your doctor before taking Dong quai to be sure it is the right herbal treatment for you. Although most studies about the drug and its side effects are not fully proven, below you will find health risks that have been associated with the use of Dong quai.

Click here for more information about phytoestrogens or continue reading below to learn about the side effects of Dong quai.

A Note About Dong Quai’s Phytoestrogenic Properties

What Are The Side Effects of Dong Quai?Many of the side effects associated with Dong quai may be the result of its phytoestrogenic properties. Phytoestrogens occur naturally in some plants and mimic the effects of estrogen when introduced to the female body.

While phytoestrogens may be used to treat menopausal symptoms, they block the body’s natural production of estrogen.

Drug Interactions

Dong quai contains anticoagulant (blood thinning) properties and thus should not be taken in combination with other blood thinning drugs such as aspirin, warfarin (Coumadin) or heparin. Consult with your doctor before taking Dong quai with any of the following:

. Feverfew (Tanacetum parthenium)
. Garlic (Allium sativum)
. Ginger (Zingiber officinale)
. Ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba)
. Ginseng (Panax ginseng)
. Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra)
. Chinese skullcap (Scutellaria baicalensis)
. Turmeric (Curcuma longa)

Dong quai should not be mixed with anti-platelet drugs like clopidogrel (Plavix) or non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil) or napraxon.

What Are The Side Effects of Dong Quai?Dong quai should not be taken with other herbs or dietary supplements. Combining Dong quai with other herbs is known to cause headaches, drowsiness, dizziness, irritability, insomnia, sweating, fever, weakness, increased male breast size, kidney problems or skin rash.


The essential oil of Dong quai contains cancer causing agents. You should not drink it, especially if you are at risk for hormone-related cancers, including breast, ovarian and uterine.


Taking Dong quai may cause the uterus to contract and raise the risk of natural abortion or miscarriage. It should not be used by pregnant women.

Sensitivity to sunlight

What Are The Side Effects of Dong Quai?Dong quai can cause sensitivity to sunlight, rashes and skin inflammation. Avoid prolonged periods of sunlight and apply sunscreen regularly when taking this herb. Consult with your doctor before taking Dong quai in combination with St. John’s wort, which can also cause sensitivity to sunlight.

Other side effects

Dong quai may cause diarrhea, nausea, upset stomach, vomiting, loss of appetite, bloating or burping.

Substitutes for Dong quai

If you are concerned about using Dong quai to treat your menopausal symptoms, consider substituting a non-estrogenic herb, which help boost the body’s natural production of hormones such as estrogen. Click here to learn more about non-estrogenic herbs.

Main Sections
Is an Andean plant regarded as one of the best treatments for menopause symptoms because of it boosts the endocrine system.
Dong Quai
Is an Asian plant that has been used for thousands of years to treat gynecological problems, blood disorders, and as a sedative.
Ginkgo Biloba
Is a popular and ancient Chinese herbal remedy used to improve circulation, mental performance, and menopause symptoms.
Is a root widely used by Chinese, Koreans and Native Americans as a preventative treatment and to increase vitality.
Is a healthy, low-fat source of protein and is used as treat menopause because of its high amount of phytoestrogens.
Red Clover
Is a variety of Clover with a high nutritional value and it's widely used as an immune-booster and menopause relief, but it has some side effects.
Black Cohosh
Is a phytoestrogenic herb from eastern North America and it is used as a supplement to treat several illnesses, including menopause symptoms.
Used since roman times to help women with hormonal imbalances, but pregnant women should avoid it.
Which herb should women try? Today women are looking for relief from their menopause symptoms with herbs. Phytoestrogenic herbs and non-estrogenic herbs are good in relieving menopause symptoms, but recent studies show that non-estrogenic herbs have no side effects because they help the body to produce its own hormones instead of introducing hormones like the phytoestrogenic ones. Learn more about non-estrogenic herbs for menopause.
What Are The Side Effects of Dong Quai?