Peony might block chemicals that can cause pain and swelling. It might also prevent blood clotting, kill cancer cells, and act as an antioxidant. Peony is sometimes called red peony and white peony. This refers to the color of the processed root, not the color of the flowers.
People use peony for menstrual cramps, aging skin, cough, epilepsy, psoriasis, and many other conditions, but there is no good scientific evidence to support these uses.
Uses & Effectiveness ?
We currently have no information for PEONY overview.
When applied to the skin: There isn't enough reliable information to know if peony is safe. It can cause rash in some people.
Special Precautions and Warnings
Breast-feeding: There isn't enough reliable information to know if peony is safe to use while breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.
Children: Peony is possibly safe when taken by mouth for up to 12 months by children at least 1 year old.
Bleeding disorders: Peony might slow blood clotting. Don't use it if you have a bleeding disorder.
Hormone-sensitive conditions such as breast cancer, uterine cancer, ovarian cancer, endometriosis, or uterine fibroids: Peony extract might act like estrogen. If you have any condition that might be made worse by exposure to estrogen, don't use peony.
Surgery: Peony might slow blood clotting. This might increase the chance of bleeding during and after surgery. Stop using peony at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.
Medications that slow blood clotting (Anticoagulant / Antiplatelet drugs) interacts with PEONY
Peony might slow blood clotting. Taking peony along with medications that also slow blood clotting might increase the risk of bruising and bleeding.
Phenytoin (Dilantin) interacts with PEONY
Peony root might decrease the amount of phenytoin in the body. Taking peony root along with phenytoin might decrease the effects of phenytoin and increase the risk of seizures.
Birth control pills (Contraceptive drugs) interacts with PEONY
Some birth control pills contain estrogen. Peony might have some of the same effects as estrogen. Taking peony along with birth control pills might increase the risk of side effects. It might also decrease the effects of birth control pills. If you take birth control pills along with peony, use an additional form of birth control such as a condom.
Estrogens interacts with PEONY
Peony might have some of the same effects as estrogen. Taking peony along with estrogen might increase the effects and side effects from estrogen.
Medications changed by the liver (Cytochrome P450 1A2 (CYP1A2) substrates) interacts with PEONY
Some medications are changed and broken down by the liver. Peony might change how quickly the liver breaks down these medications. This could change the effects and side effects of these medications.
Medications changed by the liver (Cytochrome P450 3A4 (CYP3A4) substrates) interacts with PEONY
Some medications are changed and broken down by the liver. Peony might change how quickly the liver breaks down these medications. This could change the effects and side effects of these medications.
Be cautious with this combination
Wang W, Tian DD, Zheng B, et al. Peony-glycyrrhiza decoction, an herbal preparation, inhibits clozapine metabolism via cytochrome P450s, but not flavin-containing monooxygenase in in vitro models. Drug Metab Dispos 2015;43(7):1147-53. View abstract.
Wang Y, Ma R. [Effect of an extract of Paeonia lactiflora on the blood coagulative and fibrinolytic enzymes]. Zhong Xi Yi Jie He Za Zhi 1990;10:101-2, 70. . View abstract.
Wu G, Wu N, Li T, et al. Total glucosides of peony ameliorates Sjogren's syndrome by affecting Th1/Th2 cytokine balance. Exp Ther Med 2016;11(3):1135-41. View abstract.
Xie HJ, Yasar U, Sandberg M, Rane A. Paeoniae Radix, a traditional Chinese medicine, and CYP2C9 activity. J Clin Pharm Ther 2002;27:229-30. . View abstract.
Xu Y, Li X, Chen T, et al. Radix Paeoniae Alba increases serum estrogen level and up-regulates estrogen receptor expression in uterus and vagina of immature/ovariectomized mice. Phytother Res. 2019;33(1):117-29. [RETRACTED]. View abstract.
Yamada, K., Kanba, S., Yagi, G., and Asai, M. Effectiveness of herbal medicine (shakuyaku-kanzo-to) for neuroleptic-induced hyperprolactinemia. J Clin Psychopharmacol 1997;17(3):234-235. View abstract.
Yang DG. [Comparison of pre- and post-treatmental hepatohistology with heavy dosage of Paeonia rubra on chronic active hepatitis caused liver fibrosis]. Zhongguo Zhong Xi Yi Jie He Za Zhi. 1994;14:207-9, 195. . View abstract.
Yang F, Qi X, Du Y, et al. Coloclyster of Red Peony Root Granules Alleviates Moderately Severe Acute Pancreatitis: A Double-Blinded, Placebo-Controlled, Randomized Clinical Trial. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2020;2020:8401239. View abstract.
Cai Y, Yuan Q, Xu K, et al. Assessment of the therapeutic effect of total glycosides of peony for juvenile idiopathic arthritis: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med 2016;2016:8292486. View abstract.
Chen LC, Chou MH, Lin MF, Yang LL. Effects of Paeoniae Radix, a traditional Chinese medicine, on the pharmacokinetics of phenytoin. J Clin Pharm Ther 2001;26:271-8.
Feng Z, Xu J, He G, et al. The efficacy and safety of the combination of total glucosides of peony and leflunomide for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med 2016;2016:9852793. View abstract.
Feng ZT, Xu J, He GC, Cai SJ, Li J, Mei ZG. A systemic review and meta-analysis of the clinical efficacy and safety of total glucosides of peony combined with methotrexate in rheumatoid arthritis. Clin Rheumatol. 2018 Jan;37(1):35-42. doi: 10.1007/s10067-017-3770-y. View abstract.
Guo TL, Zhou XW. [Clinical observations on the treatment of the gestational hypertension syndrome with Angelica and Paeonia powder]. Zhong Xi Yi Jie He Za Zhi 1986;6:714-6, 707.
Harada M, Suzuki M, Ozaki Y. Effect of Japanese Angelica root and peony root on uterine contraction in the rabbit in situ. J Pharmacobiodyn 1984;7:304-11. View abstract.
He X, Xing D, Ding Y, et al. Effects of cerebral ischemia-reperfusion on pharmacokinetic fate of paeoniflorin after intravenous administration of Paeoniae Radix extract in rats. J Ethnopharmacol 2004;94:339-44. . View abstract.
Hinoshita F, Ogura Y, Suzuki Y, et al. Effect of orally administered shao-yao-gan-cao-tang (Shakuyaku-kanzo-to) on muscle cramps in maintenance hemodialysis patients: a preliminary study. Am J Chin Med 2003;31:445-53. . View abstract.
Hyodo T, Taira T, Kumakura M, et al. The immediate effect of Shakuyaku-kanzo-to, traditional Japanese herbal medicine, for muscular cramps during maintenance hemodialysis. Nephron 2002;90:240. View abstract.
Kamei T, Kumano H, Iwata K, et al. The effect of a traditional Chinese prescription for a case of lung carcinoma. J Altern Complement Med 2000;6:557-9. View abstract.
Koo YK, Kim JM, Koo JY, et al. Platelet anti-aggregatory and blood anti-coagulant effects of compounds isolated from Paeonia lactiflora and Paeonia suffruticosa. Pharmazie 2010;65(8):624-8. View abstract.
Kwon S, Jin C, Cho SY, et al. Paeoniae Radix-containing herbal medicine for patients with restless legs syndrome: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Complement Ther Clin Pract. 2019;35:329-41. View abstract.
Liang Xiao, Wang YZ, Jing Liu, et al. Effects of paeoniflorin on the cerebral infarction, behavioral and cognitive impairments at the chronic stage of transient middle cerebral artery occlusion in rats. Life Sci 2005;78:413-20 . View abstract.
Liapina LA, Ammosova IaM, Novikov VS, et al. [The nature of an anticoagulant isolated from peonies in the central zone of Russia]. Izv Akad Nauk Ser Biol 1997;2:235-7. . View abstract.
Liu C, Wang J, Yang J. [Study on activating blood and eliminating stasis of total paeony glycoside(TPG)]. Zhong Yao Cai 2000;23:557-60. . View abstract.
Liu J. [Effect of Paeonia obovata 801 on metabolism of thromboxane B2 and arachidonic acid and on platelet aggregation in patients with coronary heart disease and cerebral thrombosis]. Zhonghua Yi Xue Za Zhi 1983;63:477-81. View abstract.
Liu X, Li X, Li X, et al. The efficacy and safety of total glucosides of peony in the treatment of primary Sjögren's syndrome: a multi-center, randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled clinical trial. Clin Rheumatol. 2019;38(3):657-64. Erratum in: Clin Rheumatol. 2018;38(2):617-8. View abstract.
Maeda T, Shinozuka K, Baba K, et al. Effect of shakuyaku-kanzoh-toh, a prescription composed of shakuyaku (Paeoniae Radix) and kanzoh (Glycyrrhizae Radix) on guinea pig ileum. J Pharmacobiodyn 1983;6:153-60. . View abstract.
Man SC, Li XB, Wang HH, et al. Peony-glycyrrhiza decoction for antipsychotic-related hyperprolactinemia in women with schizophrenia: a randomized controlled trial. J Clin Psychopharmacol 2016;36(6):572-9. View abstract.
Ngan LT, Moon JK, Shibamoto T, Ahn YJ. Growth-inhibiting, bactericidal, and urease inhibitory effects of Paeonia lactiflora root constituents and related compounds on antibiotic-susceptible and -resistant strains of Helicobacter pylori. J Agric Food Chem 2012;60(36):9062-73. View abstract.
Ohta H, Ni JW, Matsumoto K, et al. Peony and its major constituent, paeoniflorin, improve radial maze performance impaired by scopolamine in rats. Pharmacol Biochem Behav 1993;45:719-23. . View abstract.
Okubo T, Nagai F, Seto T, et al. The inhibition of phenylhydroquinone-induced oxidative DNA cleavage by constituents of Moutan Cortex and Paeoniae Radix. Biol Pharm Bull 2000;23:199-203.. View abstract.
Ou TT, Wu CH, Hsu JD, et al. Paeonia lactiflora Pall inhibits bladder cancer growth involving phosphorylation of Chk2 in vitro and in vivo. J Ethnopharmacol 2011;135(1):162-72. View abstract.
Papandreou V, Magiatis P, Chinou I, et al. Volatiles with antimicrobial activity from the roots of Greek Paeonia taxa. J Ethnopharmacol 2002;81:101-4.. View abstract.
Prieto JM, Recio MC, Giner RM, et al. Influence of traditional Chinese anti-inflammatory medicinal plants on leukocyte and platelet functions. J Pharm Pharmacol 2003;55:1275-82. View abstract.
Qi XG. [Protective mechanism of Salvia miltiorrhiza and Paeonia lactiflora for experimental liver damage]. Zhong Xi Yi Jie He Za Zhi 1991;11:102-4, 69. View abstract.
Sakamoto S, Kudo H, Suzuki S, et al. Pharmacotherapeutic effects of toki-shakuyaku-san on leukorrhagia in young women. Am J Chin Med 1996;24:165-8. View abstract.
Tsuda T, Sugaya A, Ohguchi H, et al. Protective effects of peony root extract and its components on neuron damage in the hippocampus induced by the cobalt focus epilepsy model. Exp Neurol 1997;146:518-25. View abstract.
Wang H, Wei W, Wang NP, et al. Effects of total glucosides of peony on immunological hepatic fibrosis in rats. World J Gastroenterol 2005;11:2124-9. . View abstract.
Sakamoto, S., Yoshino, H., Shirahata, Y., Shimodairo, K., and Okamoto, R. Pharmacotherapeutic effects of kuei-chih-fu-ling-wan (keishi-bukuryo-gan) on human uterine myomas. Am J Chin Med 1992;20(3-4):313-317. View abstract.
Shen, A. Y., Wang, T. S., Huang, M. H., Liao, C. H., Chen, S. J., and Lin, C. C. Antioxidant and antiplatelet effects of dang-gui-shao-yao-san on human blood cells. Am J Chin Med 2005;33(5):747-758. View abstract.
Sun, W. S., Imai, A., Tagami, K., Sugiyama, M., Furui, T., and Tamaya, T. In vitro stimulation of granulosa cells by a combination of different active ingredients of unkei-to. Am.J Chin Med 2004;32(4):569-578. View abstract.
Wong, A. L. and Chan, T. Y. Interaction between warfarin and the herbal product quilinggao. Ann Pharmacother 2003;37(6):836-838. View abstract.
Zong, P. P., Yan, T. Y., and Gong, M. M. [Clinical and experimental studies of effects of huayu decoction on scavenging free radicals]. Zhongguo Zhong.Xi.Yi.Jie.He.Za Zhi. 1993;13(10):591-3, 579. View abstract.
Anon. Monograph. Peony (Paeonia spp). Alt Med Rev 2001;6:495-9. View abstract.
Arentz S, Smith CA, Abbott J, Fahey P, Cheema BS, Bensoussan A. Combined Lifestyle and Herbal Medicine in Overweight Women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS): A Randomized Controlled Trial. Phytother Res. 2017 Sep;31(9):1330-1340. View abstract.
Bruynzeel DP. Contact Dermatitis Due to Paeonia (Peony). Contact Dermatitis 1989; 20:152-3.. View abstract.
Oh, G. S., Pae, H. O., Choi, B. M., Lee, H. S., Kim, I. K., Yun, Y. G., Kim, J. D., and Chung, H. T. Penta-O-galloyl-beta-D-glucose inhibits phorbol myristate acetate-induced interleukin-8 [correction of intereukin-8] gene expression in human monocytic U937 cells through its inactivation of nuclear factor-kappaB. Int Immunopharmacol. 2004;4(3):377-386. View abstract.
Oh, G. S., Pae, H. O., Oh, H., Hong, S. G., Kim, I. K., Chai, K. Y., Yun, Y. G., Kwon, T. O., and Chung, H. T. In vitro anti-proliferative effect of 1,2,3,4,6-penta-O-galloyl-beta-D-glucose on human hepatocellular carcinoma cell line, SK-HEP-1 cells. Cancer Lett 12-10-2001;174(1):17-24. View abstract.
Oh, G. S., Pae, H. O., Choi, B. M., Jeong, S., Oh, H., Oh, C. S., Rho, Y. D., Kim, D. H., Shin, M. K., and Chung, H. T. Inhibitory effects of the root cortex of Paeonia suffruticosa on interleukin-8 and macrophage chemoattractant protein-1 secretions in U937 cells. J Ethnopharmacol. 2003;84(1):85-89. View abstract.
Du, J. H. and Dong, B. D. [Comparative study on clinical efficacy of using methotrexate singly or combined with total glucosides of Paeony in treating rheumatoid arthritis]. Zhongguo Zhong.Xi.Yi.Jie.He.Za Zhi. 2005;25(6):540-542. View abstract.
Fang, J. Y. [Effect of fu-zheng qu-xie on gastric disease infected with Campylobacter pyloridis]. Zhong Xi Yi Jie He Za Zhi 1991;11(3):150-2, 133. View abstract.
Grebeniuk, V. N., Mannanov, A. M., Korsun, V. F., and Vinogradova, A. I. [Peony tincture in the complex treatment of allergic dermatoses]. Vestn.Dermatol.Venerol. 1987;(10):46-48. View abstract.
Guo, D., Ye, G., and Guo, H. A new phenolic glycoside from Paeonia lactiflora. Fitoterapia 2006;77(7-8):613-614. View abstract.
Guo, T. L. and Zhou, X. W. [Clinical observations on the treatment of the gestational hypertension syndrome with Angelica and Paeonia powder]. Zhong.Xi.Yi.Jie.He.Za Zhi. 1986;6(12):714-6, 707. View abstract.
Hsiang, C. Y., Hsieh, C. L., Wu, S. L., Lai, I. L., and Ho, T. Y. Inhibitory effect of anti-pyretic and anti-inflammatory herbs on herpes simplex virus replication. Am J Chin Med 2001;29(3-4):459-467. View abstract.
Hsiu, S. L., Lin, Y. T., Wen, K. C., Hou, Y. C., and Chao, P. D. A deglucosylated metabolite of paeoniflorin of the root of Paeonia lactiflora and its pharmacokinetics in rats. Planta Med 2003;69(12):1113-1118. View abstract.
Jia, Y. B. and Tang, T. Q. [Paeonia Lactiflora injection in treating chronic cor pulmonale with pulmonary hypertension]. Zhong.Xi.Yi.Jie.He.Za Zhi. 1991;11(4):199-202, 195. View abstract.
Kang, D. G., Moon, M. K., Choi, D. H., Lee, J. K., Kwon, T. O., and Lee, H. S. Vasodilatory and anti-inflammatory effects of the 1,2,3,4,6-penta-O-galloyl-beta-D-glucose (PGG) via a nitric oxide-cGMP pathway. Eur J Pharmacol 11-7-2005;524(1-3):111-119. View abstract.
Kang, J. H., Park, Y. H., Choi, S. W., Yang, E. K., and Lee, W. J. Resveratrol derivatives potently induce apoptosis in human promyelocytic leukemia cells. Exp.Mol.Med 12-31-2003;35(6):467-474. View abstract.
Kim, H. J., Chang, E. J., Bae, S. J., Shim, S. M., Park, H. D., Rhee, C. H., Park, J. H., and Choi, S. W. Cytotoxic and antimutagenic stilbenes from seeds of Paeonia lactiflora. Arch Pharm Res 2002;25(3):293-299. View abstract.
Lee, S. J., Lee, H. M., Ji, S. T., Lee, S. R., Mar, W., and Gho, Y. S. 1,2,3,4,6-Penta-O-galloyl-beta-D-glucose blocks endothelial cell growth and tube formation through inhibition of VEGF binding to VEGF receptor. Cancer Lett. 5-10-2004;208(1):89-94. View abstract.
Lee, S. J., Lee, I. S., and Mar, W. Inhibition of inducible nitric oxide synthase and cyclooxygenase-2 activity by 1,2,3,4,6-penta-O-galloyl-beta-D-glucose in murine macrophage cells. Arch Pharm Res 2003;26(10):832-839. View abstract.
Lee, S. M., Li, M. L., Tse, Y. C., Leung, S. C., Lee, M. M., Tsui, S. K., Fung, K. P., Lee, C. Y., and Waye, M. M. Paeoniae Radix, a Chinese herbal extract, inhibit hepatoma cells growth by inducing apoptosis in a p53 independent pathway. Life Sci 9-27-2002;71(19):2267-2277. View abstract.
Lee, S., Lim, J. M., Jin, M. H., Park, H. K., Lee, E. J., Kang, S., Kim, Y. S., and Cho, W. G. Partially purified paeoniflorin exerts protective effects on UV-induced DNA damage and reduces facial wrinkles in human skin. J Cosmet.Sci 2006;57(1):57-64. View abstract.
Leem, K., Kim, H., Boo, Y., Lee, H. S., Kim, J. S., Yoo, Y. C., Ahn, H. J., Park, H. J., Seo, J. C., Kim, H. K., Jin, S. Y., Park, H. K., Chung, J. H., and Cho, J. J. Effects of Paeonia lactiflora root extracts on the secretions of monocyte chemotactic protein-1 and -3 in human nasal fibroblasts. Phytother.Res 2004;18(3):241-243. View abstract.
Liang, R., Chen, M. R., and Xu, X. [Effect of dandi tablet on blood lipids and sex hormones in women of postmenopausal stage]. Zhongguo Zhong.Xi.Yi.Jie.He.Za Zhi. 2003;23(8):593-595. View abstract.
Ma, X. F. [Experimental and clinical studies on the treatment of pulmonary heart disease and pulmonary hypertension with Paeonia lactiflora]. Zhong.Xi.Yi.Jie.He.Za Zhi. 1988;8(11):660-2, 645. View abstract.
Au, T. K., Lam, T. L., Ng, T. B., Fong, W. P., and Wan, D. C. A comparison of HIV-1 integrase inhibition by aqueous and methanol extracts of Chinese medicinal herbs. Life Sci 2-23-2001;68(14):1687-1694. View abstract.
Bian, X., Xu, Y., Zhu, L., Gao, P., Liu, X., Liu, S., Qian, M., Gai, M., Yang, J., and Wu, Y. Prevention of maternal-fetal blood group incompatibility with traditional Chinese herbal medicine. Chin Med J (Engl.) 1998;111(7):585-587. View abstract.
Deng, Y. Y., Chen, Y. P., Wang, L., Hu, Z., Jin, Y., Shen, L., Zhu, R., and Zhong, Y. [Clinical study on treatment of mid-advanced crescentic nephritis by qingre huoxue recipe]. Zhongguo Zhong.Xi.Yi.Jie.He.Za Zhi. 2004;24(12):1084-1086. View abstract.
Yang HO, Ko WK, Kim JY, Ro HS. Paeoniflorin: an antihyperlipidemic agent from Paeonia lactiflora. Fitoterapia 2004;75:45-9.. View abstract.
Yu C, Fan X, Li Z, Liu X, Wang G. Efficacy and safety of total glucosides of paeony combined with acitretin in the treatment of moderate-to-severe plaque psoriasis: a double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled trial. Eur J Dermatol. 2017 Apr 1;27(2):150-154. doi: 10.1684/ejd.2016.2946. View abstract.
Yuan, H. N., Wang, C. Y., Sze, C. W., Tong, Y., Tan, Q. R., Feng, X. J., Liu, R. M., Zhang, J. Z., Zhang, Y. B., and Zhang, Z. J. A randomized, crossover comparison of herbal medicine and bromocriptine against risperidone-induced hyperprolactinemia in patients with schizophrenia. J Clin Psychopharmacol 2008;28(3):264-370. View abstract.
Zangooei Pourfard M, Mirmoosavi SJ, Beiraghi Toosi M, et al. Efficacy and tolerability of hydroalcoholic extract of Paeonia officinalis in children with intractable epilepsy: An open-label pilot study. Epilepsy Res 2021;176:106735. View abstract.
Zhang W, Dai SM. Mechanisms involved in the therapeutic effects of Paeonia lactiflora Pallas in rheumatoid arthritis. Int Immunopharmacol 2012;14(1):27-31. View abstract.
Zhou Y, Jin L, Kong F, et al. Clinical and immunological consequences of total glucosides of paeony treatment in Sjögren's syndrome: A randomized controlled pilot trial. Int Immunopharmacol. 2016 Oct;39:314-319. doi: 10.1016/j.intimp.2016.08.006. View abstract.
Zhu Q, Qi X, Wu Y, Wang K. Clinical study of total glucosides of paeony for the treatment of diabetic kidney disease in patients with diabetes mellitus. Int Urol Nephrol. 2016 Nov;48(11):1873-1880. doi: 10.1007/s11255-016-1345-5. View abstract.
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CONDITIONS OF USE AND IMPORTANT INFORMATION: This information is meant to supplement, not replace advice from your doctor or healthcare provider and is not meant to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions or adverse effects. This information may not fit your specific health circumstances. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified health care provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor or health care professional before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your health care plan or treatment and to determine what course of therapy is right for you.
This copyrighted material is provided by Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Consumer Version. Information from this source is evidence-based and objective, and without commercial influence. For professional medical information on natural medicines, see Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Professional Version.
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