Editor's Comment: Panax ginseng is a variety of ginseng commonly used in herbal medicine. Forms of Panax ginseng include white ginseng and red ginseng. The active components in Panax Ginseng support the production of an adrenal hormone, to promote motivation and vitality.
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Effects of Panax ginseng extract in patients with fibromyalgia: a 12-week, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial.
By Alessandra S. Braz, et al.
The purpose of the study was to evaluate the efficacy of an extract of Panax ginseng in patients with fibromyalgia.
A randomized, double-blind, controlled clinical trial was carried out over 12 weeks to compare the effects of P. ginseng (100 mg/d) with amitriptyline (25 mg/d) and placebo in 38 patients with fibromyalgia:
13 in Group I (amitriptyline),
13 in Group II (placebo), and
12 in Group III (P. ginseng).
Ratings on the Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) revealed a reduction in pain in the P. ginseng group (p < .0001), an improvement in fatigue (p < .0001) and an improvement in sleep (p < .001), with respect to baseline characteristics, but there were no differences between the three groups.
With respect to anxiety, improvements occurred in the P. ginseng group compared to baseline (p < .0001); however, amitriptyline treatment resulted in significantly greater improvements (p < .05). P. ginseng reduced the number of tender points and improved patients' quality of life (using the Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire - FIQ); however, there were no differences between groups.
The beneficial effects experienced by patients for all parameters suggest a need for further studies to be performed on the tolerability and efficacy of this phytotherapic as a complementary therapy for fibromyalgia.
Source: Revista Brasileira de Psiquiatria, March 2013. By Alessandra S. Braz, Liana Clébia S. Morais, Ana Patríca Paula, Margareth F. F. M. DinizI Reinaldo N. Almeida. Laboratory of Pharmaceutical Technology, Universidade Federal da Paraíba, Brazil.