Popular Traditional Chinese Herbal Medicine Can Reduce Cardiovascular Problems Related Hospitalization 

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A recent study shows that a treatment from traditional Chinese medicine can reduce hospitalization rates and cardiovascular deaths in heart failure patients, making it a promising option for many people who seek alternative therapies like acupuncture and herbal remedies. 

Qiliqiangxin derived from 11 different herbs 

Qiliqiangxin, an herbal extract from 11 different herbs, has demonstrated its effectiveness in reducing N-terminal pro–B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) levels and improving heart failure symptoms when used alongside conventional treatments. Additionally, preclinical studies suggest that it may have the ability to mitigate cardiac remodelling and myocardial fibrosis. 

The QUEST trial conducted at 133 hospitals in China and Hong Kong SAR aimed to evaluate qiliqiangxin’s clinical safety and effectiveness in patients with heart failure and reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF) regarding major heart failure outcomes. 

The study included adult HFrEF patients with a left ventricular ejection fraction of 40% or less and NT-proBNP levels of 450 pg/ml or more. They were on stable baseline treatment for at least two weeks. Patients were randomly assigned to either qiliqiangxin or a placebo in addition to their regular chronic heart failure medications. The main goal was to determine the occurrence of rehospitalization due to worsening heart failure or cardiovascular death. 

In a study of 3,110 participants, half received qiliqiangxin while the other half received a placebo. Participants, with an average age of 62 and 72.1% men, had a mean left ventricular ejection fraction of 32% and a median NT-proBNP of 1730.80 pg/ml. 

Qiliqiangxin lowers rate of hospitalization 

Over 18.3 months, the qiliqiangxin group had a lower rate of the primary endpoint (25%) compared to the placebo group (30%). This reduction was due to decreased risk of rehospitalization for worsening heart failure and cardiovascular death. The positive effect was consistent across age groups, NT-proBNP levels, and patients with or without angiotensin receptor/neprilysin inhibitors (ARNIs).

In the secondary endpoints, the qiliqiangxin group exhibited a significant decrease in serum NT-proBNP levels over three months, consistent with a previous pilot study. Safety analysis showed no variation in all-cause mortality between qiliqiangxin and placebo groups, with similar tolerability and adverse event profiles.

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