vitamins health supplements longevity antiaging
Vitamin Stuff
Vitamins Minerals Supplements Antioxidants Antiaging Longevity Herbs Skin Care Diets Healthy Foods
Vitamins Home Page Vitamin Stuff Notes Health and Fitness Vitamin Stuff Articles Special Sections

Is Dan Shen effective for stroke patients?

For over three decades the traditional Chinese herb, Dan Shen (also known as Red Sage, Salvia Miltiorrhiza, and Radix Salvis Mitiorhiza), has been used as a part of standard care for post-stroke patients in Chinese hospitals. The herb is traditionally given to those who have suffered an ischemic stroke, a common form of stroke, accounting for nearly 83% of all strokes today. Ischemic stroke is most often caused by the obstruction of a blood vessel to the brain.

Dan Shen is commonly known as a heart tonic. Many Chinese doctors use it to strengthen and tone the heart and liver. While Dan Shen has been used for strokes for decades, few researchers have tested the herb in clinical trials to prove effectiveness. Recently, researchers at Sichuan University in Chengdu, China, conducted a systematic review drawing conclusions of existing trials. The reviewers used six studies that met specific criteria, involving 494 acute ischemic stroke patients. The researchers found no evidence to support the use of the herb for stroke victims. However, it did show a short-term improvement to neurological deficits for the stroke patients.

Published in The Cochrane Library, part of The Cochrane Collaboration, the study was re-evaluated with concern. The Cochrane Collaboration is a nonprofit, independent, international organization that generates and distributes systematic reviews of health care interventions and promotes the search for evidence in the form of clinical trials and other studies. The Cochrane reviewers believed that methods of choosing test subjects to Dan Shen or placebo were vague. They concluded that this could have inflated the results of successful treatment by as much as 40%. The researchers are unclear to the actual benefits of Dan Shen, due to the possible faults in the studies.

Treatment and follow-up on the Dan Shen studies only ranged from fourteen to twenty-eight days. This made it impossible to determine any long-term effects from the herb.

Medical experts are still hopeful that quality trials will be held to determine whether the short-term neurological benefits of Dan Shen are factual. If so, it could prove to be a useful treatment for stroke patients, even if on a short-term basis.

While Chinese medicine determines the successfulness of their medicine based on basic science and laboratory tests, Western medicine depends on clearly defined clinical trials that prove effectiveness. Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has a long way to go before being accepted by Western Medicine.

Extensive research will be held to determine not only the effectiveness of Dan Shen, but other Chinese herbal medicines as well.

Vitamins & Alternative Medicine
Antioxidants and Antioxidant information
Alternative Medicine Info
Herbs and herbal medicine
Dieting, Weight Loss

Longevity Information
Short Health Articles
Longer Health Articles
Amino Acid Info
The Skin Care Page
Health and Fitness
Main Sections

 Alternative Medicine
 Antiaging Tips
 Health Foods
 Herbal Medicine
 Longevity info
 Health Nutrients
 Skin Care
 Weight loss

Other sections

 Focus areas
 Random Notes
 Amino Acids

Disclaimer: Vitamin Stuff is a website about Vitamins and Supplements, among a great many other topics. However, the information provided on this website is intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice. Individuals wishing to embark on a longevity, antiaging, life extension program, especially those who have been diagnosed with health problems and who use prescribed medication, should consult with their family doctor beforehand.

Warning: The information provided on this website is wholly owned by this site and may not be duplicated in any way, shape, or form without consent.