Xiao Chai Hu Tang, aka Sho-saiko-to, SST, HO9, TO9, Bupleurum

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For Liver and Gallbladder Disorders.

This herbal famous formula is the classic herbal text "Treatise on Febrile Diseases Caused by Cold" (Shang Han Lun).   Today almost 2,000 years later it remains one of the most useful and most prescribed herbal formula in the world. Treating a wide range of liver and Gallbladder disorders.  This classical formula is comprised of Bupleurum Root, Pinellia Tuber, Ginger, Scutellaria Root, Jujube, Ginseng and Licorice. The same formula of herbs as in the studies listed below. The difference is in presentations:, SST and  TO9 are a capsule form of the same formula just stronger dosage and better absorbed than the tablets that are commonly sold in most Asian markets. H09 Sho-saiko-to and recently TO9 are in granular form, a stronger dosage and offers the best absorption (except for liquids, considered the highest in bio-availability). All three presentations are manufactured by HONSO. We do our own liquid extracts.

Granules HO9 $49.95   lasts 2 weeks

The Only Standardized Japanese Herbal Remedy for Liver Health.  Honso's H09  are the granule version of the famous Chinese herbal formula, Xiao Chai Hu Tang,  Sho-saiko-to, (Japanese name)  also sold by Honso under their SST label, and Minor Buplureum Decoction the English name.  One box is typical a 2 week supply. 

Capsules:  TO 9 or SST (Sho-Saiko-To) $49.95   lasts 2 weeks

capsules  version of the same formula made by a subsidiary of HONSO. Typical dosage for capsules 3 Times Daily

GMP certified quality produced  under strict guidelines to eliminate all contaminants.

 Liquid Extract 60 ml  $24.95  last 4-6 weeks

European Dropper Bottle. Produced by the HappyHerbalist. Liquid extracts are typically the most bio-available form of delivery.  last 2-4 weeks. Convenient easy to use.  Non-alcohol, Glycerin based extract of the famous Chinese Formula.  dosage: shake 1-2 X into a warm glass of water 2-3 times  a day. 

The dosage may vary dependent upon the individual presentation. HIgher dosages do not predict better results and it's more likely a lower dose over long term may be indicated. 


HONSO (HO9) and TCM ZONE (T09) is a respected Japanese evidence based oriental medicine company who produces Traditional Chinese Herbal Medicine (Kampo). HONSO is based in Japan while TCM ZONE is mainland China based. Kampo has been an integral part of Japanese health care for over 900 years. In Japan only licensed medical doctors may prescribe Kampo herbs. Additionally Japanese insurance companies cover the cost of these herbal prescriptions. There is emerging scientific evidence that Sho-saiko-to may benefit patients with hepatitis (a western defined disorder) say researchers at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. Phase II studies include;

A two month course of treatment and review is recommended. Results vary by individual. There are reports that people feel a significant boost in energy within the first month of usage. In general, Japanese physicians recommend their patients to take this formula for 6-12 months. For chronic liver damage, can be taken for even a longer period of time. In the on-going clinical trial physicians are giving their patients 7.5g/day of Sho-saiko-to (granules) for one year. May offer a solution for interferon non-responders.

In Traditional Chinese Herbal Medicine (my area of expertise) this formula is one of the most popular prescribed herbal formulas. It treats a wide-range of disorders mainly used to harmonize the body in what is termed Shao Yang Disorders.

  Most Shao yang disorders when treated properly resolve quickly, usually within one month. In the clinical trials stated above long term use of the herbs were prescribed and monitored. Traditional overuse of this formula may injure the Qi and cause headache, dizziness and bleeding of the gums. In the study quoted above Women who are nursing or pregnant and patients currently undergoing interferon treatment should not take Sho-saiko-to. Sho-saiko-to related pneumonitis (which may be fatal) has been reported in 74 patients (approximately 1 in 20,000).

 Anticoagulants / Antiplatelets: Theoretically, SST may cause additive effects when administered concurrently. Interferon: Concurrent use may increase the risk of interstitial pneumonitis.

Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs): Some ingredients, such as ginseng and licorice, may potentiate activity of MAOIs.

 New York Trial Sho-saiko-to for patients with chronic hepatitis C who are intolerant to or have contraindication to Interferon-based therapy.

San Diego Trial: Safety and Tolerability of Sho-saiko-to in Patients with Compensated Cirrhosis due to Chronic HCV Infection.


Oka H, et al. Prospective study of chemoprevention of hepatocellular carcinoma with Sho-saiko-to (TJ-9). Cancer 1995;76:743-9.
Two hundred and sixty patients with cirrhosis were randomized using age, sex, hepatitis B antigen status and liver function strata to treatment with Sho-saiko-to or control. Patients were followed for 5 years with bimonthly alpha-fetopretein measurement and quarterly ultrasonography. Hepatocellular carcinoma diagnoses were confirmed by angiography, computed tomography and, where indicated, biopsy. Sho-saiko-to led to a one-third reduction in the incidence of hepatocellular carcinoma (23% vs 34%) and a 40% reduction in death (24% vs 40%). Analysis of this data suggests that Sho-saiko-to has multifactorial action, both reducing the incidence of hepatocellular carcinoma and acting as a hepatoprotective agent.

 Additional Information

see published research on Sho-saiko-to (Xiao Chai Hu Tang) on PubMed
HO 9 Granules the same herbal formula as SST, TO9, Sho-saiko-to, and Xaio Chai Hu Tang except in a more bio-available granule form. Single dose package. Tear open and dissolve in a glass of warm water.

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