Efficacy of traditional medicine for the treatment of primary dysmenorrhea

Authors

Abstract

Dysmenorrhoea, pain during menstruation, affects 40-95 per cent of menstruating women, and has been reported as the most common of all gynecologic complaints and the leading cause of absenteeism of women from work, school, and other activities. Common treatment for dysmenorrhoea is medical therapy such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs) or oral contraceptive pills (OCPs) which both work by reducing myometrial activity (contractions of the uterus). The efficacy of conventional treatments such as nonsteroidals is considerable; however the failure rate is still often 20-25%. Many researchers are now seeking traditional and herbal alternatives to conventional medicine.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of a traditional herbal drug (SGA) in the treatment of primary dysmenorrhea and to compare the effect of (SGA) vs. mefenamic acid for the treatment of primary dysmenorrhea.
161 single girl students, 17-30 years old from Isfahan Medical University Dormitory, who complained of dysmenorrhea, were enrolled in this randomized, placebo-controlled, clinical trial study. The SGA has been made of Refined Saffron, Anise and Celery Seed extracts highly purified, saffron is a conventional effective medicine in improving blood circulation, Anise and Celery Seed are able to relax smooth muscle cells and ease the muscle spasms that are the immediate cause of pain. Students were randomized to use placebo, SGA (500 mg), or 500 mg doses of Mefenemic acid. We treated patients with either SGA, Mefenemic acid or placebo TDS for three days during 3 menstrual cycles with a double-blind technique. Intensity of pain was reported by using a 10-point linear analog technique. Statistical analyses were performed by the independent sample t-test, paired t-test and qualitative measurement analysis method.
Students taking SGA with daily TDS doses of 500 mg, decreased the pain intensity (p=0.001) in a manner similar to mefenemic acid (p=0.01). SGA was found to be effective for sever pain relief in dysmenorrhea. There was no side effects and this confirms the report of Gill [1992] in the folk medicine that the rural people use the plant for dysmenorrhea and various pain.
We demonstrate that the SGA and Mefenemic acid both show adequate an analgesic effect in dysmenorrhea. However our results indicate that SGA was three time superior to placebo and met patients individual demands much better and could reduce sever dysmenorrhea.
Further research on SGA therapy is encouraged.

Iranian Journal of Pharmaceutical Research (2004): Supplement 2

Iranian Journal of Pharmaceutical Research (2004): Supplement 2:37-37
Poster Presentations/Evidance Based TM/CAM

2nd International Congress on Traditional Medicine and Materia Medica
October 4-7, 2004, Tehran, Iran

105

Efficacy of traditional medicine for the treatment of primary dysmenorrhea

Khodakarami N.1, Moatar F.2

1Shaheed Beheshti Nursing Midwifery Faculty, Tehran, Iran 2Isfahan University of Medical Sciences

Dysmenorrhoea, pain during menstruation, affects 40-95 per cent of menstruating women, and has been reported as the most common of all gynecologic complaints and the leading cause of absenteeism of women from work, school, and other activities. Common treatment for dysmenorrhoea is medical therapy such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs) or oral contraceptive pills (OCPs) which both work by reducing myometrial activity (contractions of the uterus). The efficacy of conventional treatments such as nonsteroidals is considerable; however the failure rate is still often 20-25%. Many researchers are now seeking traditional and herbal alternatives to conventional medicine.

The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of a traditional herbal drug (SGA) in the treatment of primary dysmenorrhea and to compare the effect of (SGA) vs. mefenamic acid for the treatment of primary dysmenorrhea.

161 single girl students, 17-30 years old from Isfahan Medical University Dormitory, who complained of dysmenorrhea, were enrolled in this randomized, placebo-controlled, clinical trial study. The SGA has been made of Refined Saffron, Anise and Celery Seed extracts highly purified, saffron is a conventional effective medicine in improving blood circulation, Anise and Celery Seed are able to relax smooth muscle cells and ease the muscle spasms that are the immediate cause of pain. Students were randomized to use placebo, SGA (500 mg), or 500 mg doses of Mefenemic acid. We treated patients with either SGA, Mefenemic acid or placebo TDS for three days during 3 menstrual cycles with a double-blind technique. Intensity of pain was reported by using a 10-point linear analog technique. Statistical analyses were performed by the independent sample t-test, paired t-test and qualitative measurement analysis method.

Students taking SGA with daily TDS doses of 500 mg, decreased the pain intensity (p=0.001) in a manner similar to mefenemic acid (p=0.01). SGA was found to be effective for sever pain relief in dysmenorrhea. There was no side effects and this confirms the report of Gill [1992] in the folk medicine that the rural people use the plant for dysmenorrhea and various pain.

We demonstrate that the SGA and Mefenemic acid both show adequate an analgesic effect in dysmenorrhea. However our results indicate that SGA was three time superior to placebo and met patients individual demands much better and could reduce sever dysmenorrhea.

Further research on SGA therapy is encouraged.

Presenting Author: Khodakarami, N. khodakarami@nm.mui.ac.ir