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Bu-Zhong-Yi-Qi-Tang Improves Cancer-Related Fatigue

by Deesha Patel

Bojungikki-Tang is more commonly known as Bu-Zhong-Yi-Qi-Tang in Chinese; it sometimes also goes by its Japanese name of Hochu-ekki-to. Bu-Zhong-Yi-Qi-Tang is a widely used herbal prescription in eastern Asia and has been used for many ailments, including digestive issues, respiratory illnesses, and chronic fatigue syndrome. It is a formula containing astragalus root, baked licorice, ginseng, fresh ginger, tangkuei, citrus peel, red jujube-dates, atractylodes, cimicifuga, and bupleurum.


Jeong et al. in South Korea conducted a randomized clinical trial to see if Bu-Zhong-Yi-Qi-Tang improved cancer-related fatigue. Forty patients with cancer-related fatigue were placed into either the experimental group, in which they received Bu-Zhong-Yi-Qi-Tang, or a waiting list control group that did not receive the treatment for two weeks. Fatigue was primarily measured by the Visual Analouge Scale of Global Fatigue (VAS-F). Jeong et al. also measured fatigue and well-being with the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-General (FACT-G), Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-Fatigue (FACT-F), and Trial Outcome Index-Fatigue (TOI-F).

The researchers found that the experimental group had statistically significant improvements in the scores of all of the measures (VAS-F, FACT-G, FACT-F, and TOI-F) when compared to the control group. In fact, the control group had worsening fatigue scores over the study period according to the the FACT-G, FACT-F, and TOI-F measures. Jeong et al. concluded that Bu-Zhong-Yi-Qi-Tang may have beneficial effects in regards to cancer-related fatigue, and therefore the quality of life in patients. However, more clinical trials are still needed to confirm the benefits of Bu-Zhong-Yi-Qi-Tang.


References
Jeong JS, Ryu BH, Kim JS, Park JW, Choi WC, Yoon SW. Bojungikki-Tang for cancer-related fatigue: a pilot randomized clinical trial. Integre Cancer Ther. 2010;9(4).

This article was published on Thursday December 23, 2010.
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