January 12, 2020

Written by Nicolette Truscott (Chinese Medicine)

Zheng Gu Shui is an invaluable adjunct to many musculoskeletal pain conditions and is one of my personal go to favourites for topical pain relief.

Translated as ‘bone setting water’, this product was created in the Guangxi Province of China for the purpose of healing of bone fractures and traumatic injuries. It is an alcohol based topical liniment utilising many traditional Chinese herbs to assist with pain management. It achieves this through the promotion of healing through improving blood circulation and acts as an external analgesic. The alcohol base allows for rapid absorption which generally has better penetration that oil-based applications.

Most often used in conditions of acute musculoskeletal trauma manifesting as sharp pain. This is commonly diagnosed as ‘qi and blood stagnation’ from a Chinese medicine perspective. It has also been useful for many with arthritis to help manage their symptoms as well as assistance with recovery from musculoskeletal sprains and strains and post workout aches. It also has a great reputation for dispersing bruises quickly. Zhen Gu Shui is particularly useful for injuries involving tendons, ligaments and bones which have a poorer blood supply than many muscles.


Active ingredients:

Additional herbs:
Angelicae Dahuricae Radix
Reynoutria japonica rhizome
Zanthoxylum Simulans root
Dalbergia odorifera stem
Cinnamomum Camphora stem
Paeonia suffruticosa stem bark
Flemingia Macrophylla herb

How to use?

The 60ml bottle comes with a spray nozzle which makes local application easy, however it can easily be applied with a cotton ball or directly. For longer lasting application, a cotton ball can be soaked in the liniment applied to area, then wrapped with a thin gauze and left on for 1-2 hours.  Zheng Gu Shui can be applied up to 3-4 times a day in the local area of trauma or pain. The liniment gives a mild menthol heat sensation which many find quite pleasurable.

This liniment can also be used pre-workout or before activities that aggravate personal pain as a preventative measure to reduce pain aggravation during challenging activities.

General Cautions:

  • Like all topical applications, special care to be used if you have reactive skin or are prone to allergic reactions. Patch test an area of skin first before using liberally. Stop using if your skin becomes irritated.
  • Do not apply to broken skin or open wounds. As it is an alcohol base this will really sting!!!!  Similarly, wash your hands after use and do not allow contact with eyes, mouth or genitals.
  • Should be avoided during pregnancy and whilst breast feeding.
  • It can stain clothing, so be cautious around clothing you value. It dries quite quickly so the potential window for this is small
  • External use only!! Don’t use near open flame.

Zheng Gu Shui is available off the shelf at In Symmetry in both 60ml and 100ml bottles.

If you are needing some help with a musculoskeletal problem book an appointment by calling the clinic on (03) 5429 3610 or book online by clicking the link below.



  • Social Networks
  • facebook
  • facebook