This paper takes a closer look at the variations in the translation of tridoṣa in Chinese. I argue that translation inconsistencies reflect not confusion, but a range of strategic translation decisions. While some translators prioritised closer fidelity to Sanskrit originals, most chose to emphasise the compatibility between Indian and Chinese medical thought by glossing the tridoṣa with terms that were loaded with indigenous metaphorical connotations. In a rereading of one such passage, I show that understanding so-called errors as translation tactics allows historical analysis to move beyond a limited focus on the accuracy of translations and to instead explore the cultural resonances and social logics of translated texts in their historical context.