Thursday, 2 August 2012

Ginseng Better for Treating Heart Disease?

Could ginseng-based medicines be better than nitrates in treating ischemic heart disease? A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.

Complement Ther Med. 2012 Jun;20(3):155-66
Authors: Jia Y, Zhang S, Huang F, Leung SW

BACKGROUND: Ginseng-based medicines and nitrates are commonly used in treating ischemic heart disease (IHD) angina pectoris in China. Hundreds of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) reported in Chinese language claimed that ginseng-based medicines can relieve the symptoms of IHD. This study provides the first PRISMA-compliant systematic review with sensitivity and subgroup analyses to evaluate the RCTs comparing the efficacies of ginseng-based medicines and nitrates in treating ischemic heart disease, particularly angina pectoris.

METHODS: Past RCTs published up to 2010 on ginseng versus nitrates in treating IHD for 14 or more days were retrieved from major English and Chinese databases, including PubMed, Science Direct, Cochrane Library, WangFang Data, and Chinese National Knowledge Infrastructure. The qualities of included RCTs were assessed with Jadad scale, a refined Jadad scale called M scale, CONSORT 2010 checklist, and Cochrane risk of bias tool. Meta-analysis was performed on the primary outcomes including the improvement of symptoms and electrocardiography (ECG). Subgroup analysis, sensitivity analysis, and meta-regression were performed to evaluate the effects of study characteristics of RCTs, including quality, follow-up periods, and efficacy definitions on the overall effect size of ginseng.

RESULTS: Eighteen RCTs with 1549 participants were included. Overall odds ratios for comparing ginseng-based medicines with nitrates were 3.00 (95% CI: 2.27-3.96) in symptom improvement (n=18) and 1.61 (95% CI: 1.20-2.15) in ECG improvement (n=10). Subgroup analysis, sensitivity analysis, and meta-regression found no significant difference in overall effects among all study characteristics, indicating that the overall effects were stable.

CONCLUSION: The meta-analysis of 18 eligible RCTs demonstrates moderate evidence that ginseng is more effective than nitrates for treating angina pectoris. However, further RCTs for higher quality, longer follow-up periods, lager sample size, multi-center/country, and are still required to verify the efficacy.

PMID: 22500665 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


  1. Great post. I have been doing research on treating and preventing heart disease lately, ever since my aunt died from it last month. It was a huge wake up call for me. I need to start taking better care of my body. I will have to look for some ginseng based vitamins. Thanks so much for sharing.


  2. Experts believe that there are millions of people in the world suffer from angina. The condition occurs equally among men and

    women.Angina can be a sign of CHD, even if initial tests don't point to the disease. However, not all chest pain or

    discomfort is a sign of CHD. So we advise you to take Home Remedies For Angina because this is natural and free from side effects.

  3. Thank you for sharing such wonderful information! In my opinion, Keep a healthy life by consuming healthy food and doing exercise regularly is the best healthy formula.

  4. As a sign of gratitude for how my wife was saved from Ischemic Heart Disease, i decided to reach out to those still suffering from this.
    My wife suffered Ischemic Heart Disease in the year 2013 and it was really tough and heartbreaking for me because she was my all and the symptoms were terrible, she always complain of shortness of breath, and she always have swelling in her abdomen . we tried various therapies prescribed by our neurologist but none could cure her. I searched for a cure and i saw a testimony by someone who was cured and so many other with similar body problem, and he left the contact of the doctor who had the cure to Ischemic Heart Disease . I never imagined Ischemic Heart Disease. has a natural cure not until i contacted him and he assured me my wife will be fine. I got the herbal medication he recommended and my wife used it and in one months time she was fully okay even up till this moment she is so full of life.Ischemic Heart Disease . has a cure and it is a herbal cure contact the doctor for more info on on how to get the medication. Thanks admin for such an informative blog.