Salvia miltiorrhiza: (Danshen) is a significant (traditional Chinese medication) natural remedy, enhancing blood circulation and clear blood stasis. In this view, it is widely used against several heart diseases, eg, cardiomyopathy, arrhythmia, and congenital heart defects. Tanshinone IIA (tan-IIA) is the main fat-soluble component of Salvia miltiorrhiza. Modern pharmacological study shows that tan-IIA has anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant activities. Tan-IIA induces remarkable cardioprotective effects via enhancing angiogenesis which may serve as an effective treatment against cardiovascular diseases (CVD). There is also evidence that tan-IIA has extensive immunomodulatory effects and plays a significant role in the development and function of immune cells. Tan-IIA reduces the production of inflammatory mediators and restores abnormal signaling pathways via regulating the function and activation of immune cells. It can also regulate signal transduction pathways, ie, TLR/NF-κB pathway and MAPKs/NF-κB pathway, thereby tan-IIA has an anti-inflammatory, anticoagulant, antithrombotic and neuroprotective role. It plays a protective role in the pathogenesis of cardiovascular disorders (ie, atherosclerosis, hypertension) and Alzheimer’s disease. It has also been revealed that tan-IIA has an anti-tumor role by killing various tumor cells, inducing differentiation and apoptosis, and has potential activity against carcinoma progression. In the review of this fact, the tan-IIA role in different diseases and its mechanism have been summarized while its clinical applications are also explored to provide a new perspective of Salvia miltiorrhiza. An extensive study on the mechanism of action of tan-IIA is of great significance for the effective use of Chinese herbal medicine and the promotion of its status and influence on the world.