About this Journal Submit a Manuscript Table of Contents
Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 739716, 14 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/739716
Review Article

Chinese Herbal Medicine and Depression: The Research Evidence

1Department of Complementary Medicine, School of Life Sciences, University of Westminster, London W1W 6UW, UK
2Department of Human and Health Sciences, School of Life Sciences, University of Westminster, 115 New Cavendish Street, London W1W 6UW, UK

Received 14 August 2012; Revised 5 November 2012; Accepted 11 December 2012

Academic Editor: Cynthia R. Long

Copyright © 2013 Lee Butler and Karen Pilkington. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Linked References

  1. B. G. Druss, R. Rohrbaugh, T. Kosten, R. Hoff, and R. A. Rosenheck, “Use of alternative medicine in major depression,” Psychiatric Services, vol. 49, no. 11, p. 1397, 1998. View at Scopus
  2. D. Kessler, O. Bennewith, G. Lewis, and D. Sharp, “Detection of depression and anxiety in primary care: follow up study,” British Medical Journal, vol. 325, no. 7371, pp. 1016–1017, 2002. View at Scopus
  3. P. R. Knaudt, K. M. Connor, R. H. Weisler, L. E. Churchill, and J. R. T. Davidson, “Alternative therapy use by psychiatric outpatients,” Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, vol. 187, no. 11, pp. 692–695, 1999. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  4. J. Unützer, R. Klap, R. Sturm et al., “Mental disorders and the use of alternative medicine: results from a national survey,” American Journal of Psychiatry, vol. 157, no. 11, pp. 1851–1857, 2000. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  5. K. J. Hunt, H. F. Coelho, B. Wider et al., “Complementary and alternative medicine use in England: results from a national survey,” International Journal of Clinical Practice, vol. 64, no. 11, pp. 1496–1502, 2010. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar
  6. Z. Russinova, N. J. Wewiorski, and D. Cash, “Use of alternative health care practices by persons with serious mental illness: perceived benefits,” American Journal of Public Health, vol. 92, no. 10, pp. 1600–1603, 2002. View at Scopus
  7. P. Wu, C. Fuller, X. Liu et al., “Use of complementary and alternative medicine among women with depression: results of a national survey,” Psychiatric Services, vol. 58, no. 3, pp. 349–356, 2007. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  8. P. M. Barnes, B. Bloom, and R. L. Nahin, “Complementary and alternative medicine use among adults and children: United States, 2007,” National Health Statistics Reports, no. 12, pp. 1–23, 2009. View at Scopus
  9. Australian Bureau of Statistics, “Australian social trends, 2008,” Health: Complementary Therapies 4102.0, 2009, http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/Lookup/4102.0Chapter5202008.
  10. N. Niv, J. P. Shatkin, A. B. Hamilton, J. Unützer, R. Klap, and A. S. Young, “The use of herbal medications and dietary supplements by people with mental illness,” Community Mental Health Journal, vol. 46, no. 6, pp. 563–569, 2010. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  11. C. C. L. Xue, A. L. Zhang, V. Lin, C. Da Costa, and D. F. Story, “Complementary and alternative medicine use in Australia: a national population-based survey,” Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, vol. 13, no. 6, pp. 643–650, 2007. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  12. E. B. Gold, Y. Bair, G. Zhang et al., “Cross-sectional analysis of specific complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) use by racial/ethnic group and menopausal status: the Study of Women's Health Across the Nation (SWAN),” Menopause, vol. 14, no. 4, pp. 612–623, 2007. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  13. B. Gaster and J. Holroyd, “St John's wort for depression: a systematic review,” Archives of Internal Medicine, vol. 160, no. 2, pp. 152–156, 2000. View at Scopus
  14. P. Hammerness, E. Basch, C. Ulbricht et al., “St. John's wort: a systematic review of adverse effects and drug interactions for the consultation psychiatrist,” Psychosomatics, vol. 44, no. 4, pp. 271–282, 2003. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  15. K. Linde, M. M. Berner, and L. Kriston, “St John's wort for major depression,” Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, no. 4, p. CD000448, 2008. View at Scopus
  16. A. R. Jadad, R. A. Moore, D. Carroll et al., “Assessing the quality of reports of randomized clinical trials: is blinding necessary?” Controlled Clinical Trials, vol. 17, no. 1, pp. 1–12, 1996. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  17. S. H. Downs and N. Black, “The feasibility of creating a checklist for the assessment of the methodological quality both of randomised and non-randomised studies of health care interventions,” Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, vol. 52, no. 6, pp. 377–384, 1998. View at Scopus
  18. M. C. Brouwers, M. E. Johnston, M. L. Charette, S. E. Hanna, A. R. Jadad, and G. P. Browman, “Evaluating the role of quality assessment of primary studies in systematic reviews of cancer practice guidelines,” BMC Medical Research Methodology, vol. 5, no. 1, article 8, 2005. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  19. L. D. Saunders, G. M. Soomro, J. Buckingham, G. Jamtvedt, and P. Raina, “Assessing the methodological quality of nonrandomized intervention studies,” Western Journal of Nursing Research, vol. 25, no. 2, pp. 223–237, 2003. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  20. K. S. Malcomson, L. Dunwoody, and A. S. Lowe-Strong, “Psychosocial interventions in people with multiple sclerosis: a review,” Journal of Neurology, vol. 254, no. 1, pp. 1–13, 2007. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  21. H. Zhao, X. Wan, and J. X. Chen, “A mini review of traditional Chinese medicine for the treatment of depression in China,” American Journal of Chinese Medicine, vol. 37, no. 2, pp. 207–213, 2009. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  22. X. Qin, P. Li, M. Han, Z. Liu, and J. Liu, “Systematic review of randomized controlled trials of Xiaoyao powder in treatment of depression,” Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine, vol. 6, 2010, http://en.cnki.com.cn/Article_en/CJFDTOTAL-ZZYZ201006009.htm.
  23. Y. Zhang, M. Han, Z. Liu, J. Wang, Q. He, and J. Liu, “Chinese herbal formula Xiao Yao San for treatment of depression: a systematic review of randomized controlled trials,” Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, vol. 2012, Article ID 931636, 13 pages, 2012. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar
  24. F. Qin, X. A. Wu, Y. Tang, Q. Huang, Z. J. Zhang, and J. H. Yuan, “Meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials to assess the effectiveness and safety of free and easy wanderer plus, a polyherbal preparation for depressive disorders,” Journal of Psychiatric Research, vol. 45, no. 11, pp. 1518–1524, 2011.
  25. Y. Wang, R. Fan, and X. Huang, “Meta-analysis of the clinical effectiveness of traditional Chinese medicine formula Chaihu-Shugan-San in depression,” Journal of Ethnopharmacology, vol. 141, no. 2, pp. 571–577, 2012.
  26. M. J. Kou and J. X. Chen, “Integrated traditional and Western medicine for treatment of depression based on syndrome differentiation: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials based on the Hamilton depression scale,” Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine, vol. 32, no. 1, pp. 1–5, 2012.
  27. V. Scheid, D. Bensky, A. Ellis, and R. Barolet, Chinese Herbal Medicine: Formulas and Strategies, Eastland Press, Seattle, Wash, USA, 2nd edition, 2009.
  28. J. Wu, H. An, Y. Li, and L. Duan, “TCM treatment with the modified wendan tang in 40 cases of melancholia,” Journal of Taditional Chinese Medicine, vol. 19, no. 4, pp. 296–297, 1999. View at Scopus
  29. K. Yamada, G. Yagi, and S. Kanba, “Effectiveness of herbal medicine (Rokumigan and Hachimijiogan) for fatigue or loss of energy in patients with partial remitted major depressive disorder,” Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences, vol. 59, no. 5, pp. 610–612, 2005. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  30. Y. Li, D. Xu, and Q. Li, “Shugan Jieyu Yin for treatment of senile depression—a clinical report of 84 cases,” Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine, vol. 26, no. 1, pp. 39–41, 2006. View at Scopus
  31. H. C. Luo, R. Q. Qian, X. Y. Zhao et al., “Clinical observation on effect of danzhi xiaoyao powder in treating depression,” Chinese Journal of Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine, vol. 26, no. 3, pp. 212–214, 2006 (Chinese). View at Scopus
  32. Y. J. Li, H. C. Luo, and R. Q. Qian, “Effect of Danzhi Xiaoyao Powder on neuro-immuno-endocrine system in patients with depression,” Chinese Journal of Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine, vol. 27, no. 3, pp. 197–200, 2007. View at Scopus
  33. Z. M. Shen, M. L. Zhu, and A. Q. Zhao, “Comparative observation on efficacy of jieyu pill and maprotiline in treating depression,” Chinese Journal of Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine, vol. 24, no. 5, pp. 415–417, 2004. View at Scopus
  34. X. Y. Sun, A. Q. Chen, X. F. Xu, H. G. Zhang, Q. S. Tang, and H. Y. Zhang, “Randomized, double blind, placebo-controlled trial of Shuganjieyu capsule in the treatment of mild or moderate depression,” Chinese Journal of New Drugs, vol. 18, no. 5, pp. 413–457, 2009. View at Scopus
  35. Z. Y. Yang, W. B. Zhang, and J. L. Liu, “Comparative study of modified Xiaoyao pill combining amitriptyline on therapeutic effect and compliance in treating patients with depression,” Chinese Journal of Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine, vol. 27, no. 7, pp. 642–644, 2007 (Chinese). View at Scopus
  36. G. H. Yu, S. C. Liang, and Q. Z. Sun, “Study on modified Xiaoyao decoction combining clomipramine treating depression,” Chinese Journal of Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine, vol. 27, no. 4, pp. 318–320, 2007. View at Scopus
  37. H. W. Zhang, C. Y. Wang, H. N. Xu et al., “Clinical study on effect of fluoxetine combined with Chinese medicine or tibetan drugs in treating senile depression in plateau district,” Chinese Journal of Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine, vol. 26, no. 3, pp. 202–204, 2006 (Chinese). View at Scopus
  38. Z. J. Zhang, W. H. Kang, Q. Li, and Q. R. Tan, “The beneficial effects of the herbal medicine Free and Easy Wanderer Plus (FEWP) for mood disorders: double-blind, placebo-controlled studies,” Journal of Psychiatric Research, vol. 41, no. 10, pp. 828–836, 2007. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  39. S. Weng, J. Tang, G. Wang, X. Wang, and H. Wang, “Comparison of the addition of siberian ginseng (Acanthopanax senticosus) versus Fluoxetine to Lithium for the treatment of bipolar disorder in adolescents: a randomized, double-blind trial,” Current Therapeutic Research, vol. 68, no. 4, pp. 280–290, 2007. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  40. Z. J. Zhang, W. H. Kang, Q. R. Tan et al., “Adjunctive herbal medicine with carbamazepine for bipolar disorders: a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study,” Journal of Psychiatric Research, vol. 41, no. 3-4, pp. 360–369, 2007. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  41. X. Z. Zhang and Z. J. Li, “Clinical observation on treatment of dysthymia with combined use of Xiaochaihu Decoction and doxepin,” Journal of Chinese Integrative Medicine, vol. 3, no. 4, pp. 312–313, 2005. View at Scopus
  42. N. Q. Zhou, Z. X. Song, and W. L. Tian, “Clinical observation on effect of huoxue jieyu decoction in treating depression after craniotomy: a report of 45 cases,” Chinese Journal of Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine, vol. 25, no. 11, pp. 1020–1022, 2005. View at Scopus
  43. J. Q. He, X. W. Tang, H. X. Chen, and Z. Xiang, “Study on treatment of climacteric depression with bushen tiaogan qingxin recipe,” Chinese Journal of Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine, vol. 24, no. 10, pp. 889–892, 2004. View at Scopus
  44. K. Koike, S. Ohno, N. Takahashi et al., “Efficacy of the herbal medicine Unkei-to as an adjunctive treatment to hormone replacement therapy for postmenopausal women with depressive symptoms,” Clinical Neuropharmacology, vol. 27, no. 4, pp. 157–162, 2004. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  45. F. Qu, X. Cai, Y. Gu et al., “Chinese medicinal herbs in relieving perimenopausal depression: a randomized, controlled trial,” Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, vol. 15, no. 1, pp. 93–100, 2009. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  46. T. Ushiroyama, A. Ikeda, K. Sakuma, and M. Ueki, “Chai-hu-gui-zhi-gan-jiang-tang regulates plasma interleukin-6 and soluble interleukin-6 receptor concentrations and improves depressed mood in climacteric women with insomnia,” American Journal of Chinese Medicine, vol. 33, no. 5, pp. 703–711, 2005. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  47. X. J. Wang, J. Li, Q. D. Zou, and L. Jin, “Wuling Capsule for climacteric patients with depression and anxiety state: a randomized, positive parallel controlled trial,” Journal of Chinese Integrative Medicine, vol. 7, no. 11, pp. 1042–1046, 2009. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  48. S. Q. Xue and K. Jiang, “Evaluation on effect of gennianshu in treating 85 patients with climacteric syndrome using modified Kupperman scoring,” Chinese Journal of Integrated traditional and Western medicine, vol. 24, no. 2, pp. 152–154, 2004 (Chinese). View at Scopus
  49. W. G. Chen, F. Y. Liu, and A. P. Yang, “Study of effect of integrative Chinese herbs with fluoxetine on rehabilitation of neurological impairment in patients with poststroke depression,” Journal of Chengdu University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, vol. 24, no. 4, p. 20, 2001.
  50. B. L. Feng, Q. C. Wang, and Z. Y. Li, “Influence of Jieyu Huoxue Decoction on rehabilitation of patients with depression after cerebral infarction,” Journal of Chinese Integrative Medicine, vol. 2, no. 3, pp. 182–184, 2004. View at Scopus
  51. J. L. Fu, Y. W. Zhao, and X. J. Sun, “Efficacy and safety of deanxit combined with wuling capsule in treating post-stroke depression: a randomized controlled trial,” Journal of Chinese Integrative Medicine, vol. 6, no. 3, pp. 258–261, 2008. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  52. J. F. Hong and J. L. Li, “Comparison of the curative effects of yuxingchangzhi tang and fluoxetine in the treatment of post-stroke depression,” Chinese Journal of Clinical Rehabilitation, vol. 8, no. 13, pp. 2504–2505, 2004. View at Scopus
  53. L. T. Li, S. H. Wang, H. Y. Ge, J. Chen, S. W. Yue, and M. Yu, “The beneficial effects of the herbal medicine free and easy wanderer plus (FEWP) and fluoxetine on post-stroke depression,” Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, vol. 14, no. 7, pp. 841–846, 2008. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  54. A. L. Wan and Y. F. Yuan, “Curative effects on post-stroke depression with Wuling capsule versus Sailuote capsule,” Chinese Journal of Clinical Rehabilitation, vol. 10, no. 31, pp. 4–6, 2006. View at Scopus
  55. F. Wang, X. Dong, and Y. Pan, “Effect of yukangning in the tretment of post stroke depression and nerve function recovery,” Chinese Journal of Clinical Rehabilitation, vol. 7, no. 7, p. 1225, 2003. View at Scopus
  56. B. Xu, W. Y. Zhou, and S. J. Zhang, “Observation on effect of Wuling Capsule in treating poststroke depression,” Chinese Journal of Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine, vol. 27, no. 7, pp. 640–642, 2007. View at Scopus
  57. P. B. Chou, C. A. Morse, and H. Xu, “A controlled trial of Chinese herbal medicine for premenstrual syndrome,” Journal of Psychosomatic Obstetrics and Gynecology, vol. 29, no. 3, pp. 185–192, 2008. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  58. A. Wiebrecht, “Controlled trial on Chinese phytotherapy for premenstrual syndrome,” Revista Internacional de Acupuntura, vol. 3, no. 2, pp. 82–83, 2009. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  59. T. Ushiroyama, K. Sakuma, and M. Ueki, “Efficacy of the Kampo medicine Xiong-gui-tiao-xue-yin (Kyuki-chouketsu-in), a traditional herbal medicine, in the treatment of maternity blues syndrome in the postpartum period,” American Journal of Chinese Medicine, vol. 33, no. 1, pp. 117–126, 2005. View at Publisher · View at Google Scholar · View at Scopus
  60. L. P. Chen, F. W. Wang, and H. Werner, “Effect of the combination of acupuncture and shuyusan in the treatment of depression,” Chinese Journal of Clinical Rehabilitation, vol. 8, no. 21, pp. 4250–4251, 2004. View at Scopus
  61. Q. He, J. Zhang, and Y. Tang, “A controlled study on treatment of mental depression by acupuncture plus TCM medication,” Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine, vol. 27, no. 3, pp. 166–169, 2007. View at Scopus
  62. M. Ng, “The effectiveness of traditional Chinese medicine on depressive symptoms,” Dissertation Abstracts International B, vol. 60, no. 2-B, p. 0860, 1999.
  63. S. Y. Niu, N. Li, H. You, S. X. Shi, and C. M. Liu, “Effect of integrated therapy of Chinese and western medicine on differentiation of symptoms and signs of patients with depression,” Chinese Journal of Clinical Rehabilitation, vol. 10, no. 39, pp. 7–9, 2006. View at Scopus
  64. J. Yang, J. Lü, and G. Li, “Effect of health education based on the combination of TCM and western medicine in intervening the relapse of depression,” Chinese Journal of Clinical Rehabilitation, vol. 7, no. 12, pp. 1772–1773, 2003. View at Scopus
  65. P. Lv, S. Li, R. Y. Wang, L. Chen, B. S. Ku, and J. C. Pan, “Antidepressant effect of acute administration with Jianyate Hao (JYTH) and its possible mechanism,” China Journal of Chinese Materia Medica, vol. 33, no. 3, pp. 307–310, 2008. View at Scopus
  66. H. X. Deng, N. S. Zhu, and C. W. Wang, “Effect of jiawei mojie tablet on plasma oxytocin level in patients with primary dysmenorrhea in menstrual period,” Chinese Journal of Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine, vol. 23, no. 5, pp. 354–356, 2003. View at Scopus
  67. H. X. Jia, “Integrative medical experimental studies on depression,” Chinese Journal of Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine, vol. 29, no. 3, pp. 200–201, 2009. View at Scopus
  68. G. Zhang and J. Ruan, “Treatment of mental depression due to liver-qi stagnancy with herbal decoction and by magnetic therapy at the acupoints—a report of 45 cases,” Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine, vol. 24, no. 1, pp. 20–21, 2004. View at Scopus
  69. Y. H. Chen, D. X. Wang, P. Liu, J. L. Wang, C. Dai, and G. F. Cheng, “Anti-depression effect of Kai Xin San and research of its compatibility,” Chinese Medical Journal, vol. 118, no. 14, pp. 1214–1216, 2005. View at Scopus
  70. B. Flaws, “A Chinese herbal medicine protocol for the treatment of depression,” Townsend Letter for Doctors and Patients, vol. 282, pp. 58–59, 2007.
  71. Y. H. Gu, “Bai He syndrome,” Journal of Chinese Medicine, vol. 40, pp. 21–24, 1992.
  72. A. Wiebrecht, “Adjunctive herbal medicine with carbamazepine for bipolar disorders: a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study. Commentary,” Deutsche Zeitschrift fur Akupunktur, vol. 50, no. 3, pp. 50–51, 2007. View at Scopus
  73. J. M. Jellin, Ed., Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database, Therapeutic Research Faculty, Stockton, Calif, USA, 2012, http://naturaldatabase.therapeuticresearch.com/.
  74. NICE (National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence), CG90: Depression: the Treatment and Management of Depression in Adults (Update), National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence and the National Collaborating Centre for Mental Health, London, UK, 2009.