Traditional herbal medicine as adjunctive therapy for breast cancer: A systematic review.

Traditional herbal medicine as adjunctive therapy for breast cancer: A systematic review.

Complement Ther Med. 2015 Aug;23(4):626-32

Authors: Kim W, Lee WB, Lee JW, Min BI, Baek SK, Lee HS, Cho SH

Abstract
OBJECTIVES: To assess the effectiveness of traditional herbal medicine (THM) as adjunctive therapy for breast cancer as evidenced by randomized controlled trials (RCTs).

METHODS: Five electronic English and Chinese databases were systematically searched up to February, 2014. All RCTs involving THM in combination with conventional cancer therapy for breast cancer were included.

RESULTS: Eight RCTs involving 798 breast cancer patients were systematically reviewed. Three studies reported a significant difference in the improvement of quality of life (QOL) compared to the control group. Two studies reported an increase in the white blood cell count after treatment. Data on hot flashes and sleep quality were evaluated. However, no significant differences in immediate tumor response were observed.

CONCLUSION: THM combined with conventional therapy in the treatment of breast cancer is efficacious in improving QOL and in decreasing the number of hot flashes per day. More research and well-designed, rigorous, large clinical trials are necessary to further address these issues.

PMID: 26275657 [PubMed – in process]