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Traditional Chinese Medicine May Offer Hope for AIDS

By Raymond Yu | Feb. 16, 2017 — Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is often used as either a complement or an alternative to western medicine for a variety of illness. A recent study indicates that it might have a potential role in both treating and curing HIV/AIDS.

A study published in the journal AIDS Research and Human Retroviruses reports that 9  AIDS patients from a village in Anhui Province, China, who took a formula of Chinese herbs from 2001 to 2009, have  zero or very low levels of HIV — the virus that causes AIDS — in their systems. Researchers from Jinan University in China and Ohio State University in the United States.reported that  the patients  started feeling less fatigued, short of breath and dizzy — typical symptoms of AIDS — three months into the TCM treatment, and the symptoms completely disappeared after one year of taking the TCM.

The small number of patients, as well as the fact that it was not a randomised controlled trial, mean that researchers cannot draw a definitive conclusion from this one study. The researchers noted that the medicine used needed to be validated through larger and more rigorous tests.

“If validated through these rigorous tests, the TCM can be utilized as a cost-effective HIV/AIDS treatment alone or in combination with ART, potentially contributing to a strategy for functional cure”, they wrote.

Featured image courtesy of vivi14216

Editor: Ji Xinyue