Research: LI and COLLEAGUES,

Listed in Issue 232

Abstract

LI and COLLEAGUES, (1)Institute of Integrated Chinese and Western Medicine, Peking University First Hospital, Beijing, China evaluated whether integrated strategies incorporating both Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Western medicines (iTCWM) could improve the curative efficacy of Diabetes mellitus with coronary heart disease (DM with CHD).

Background

Diabetes mellitus with coronary heart disease (DM with CHD) poses a health challenge to people in China and elsewhere in the world. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), DM with CHD is classified as a type of disease called Xiaoke and Xiongbi. In Asia, TCM has been used to treat Xiaoke and Xiongbi conditions for centuries, especially in China. In this study, it was evaluated whether integrated strategies incorporating both TCM and Western medicines (iTCWM) could improve the curative efficacy of DM with CHD.

Methodology

An extensive search for randomized clinical trials (RCTs) published up to November 2011 in either English or Chinese about iTCWM for DM with CHD was conducted. All listings in PubMed, EMBASE, the Cochrane Library, CBM, CNKI, VIP, and the Wanfang database were included in the literature search. The quality of each trial was assessed using the Cochrane Reviewers' Handbook 5.0. Data analysis was performed by the RevMan 5.0 provided by the Cochrane Collaboration.

Results

After an initial selection of 207 articles, 21 RCTs and quasi-RCTs were ultimately included in the analysis for this study. All of these trials were conducted in China and published in Chinese journals. The methodological quality of the trials was low in most studies. Selection bias and measurement bias were common in all of the studies. A meta-analysis was not conducted, due to the poor quality of the available studies.

Conclusion

The current state of the literature regarding the utility of iTCWM for the treatment of DM with CHD is inadequate. The poor quality of the available trials makes it difficult to draw any conclusions regarding the efficacy of iTCWM for the treatment of DM with CHD. This study highlights the paucity of reliable clinical evidence for iTCWM and the need for higher quality RCTs to be conducted in the future.

References

Li WW(1), Guo H, Li HH, Wang LL, Fu H, Wang XM. Integration of traditional Chinese medicines and Western medicines for treating diabetes mellitus with coronary heart disease: a systematic review.  J Altern Complement Med 19(6):492-500. doi: 10.1089/acm.2012.0568. Epub Jan 29 2013.  Jun 2013.

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