Clinical trials of integrative medicine for rheumatoid arthritis: Issues and recommendations

Chi Zhang, Miao Jiang, Xiao juan He, Aiping Lu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Controlled clinical trials of integrative therapies available to patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) improved dramatically in the past 20 years, largely because of the growing need and the methodologies improvement. Tripterygium wilfordii Hook. F., a typical example of popular use herb, has been extensively studied in trials. However, clear and convincing evidence of integrative therapy, effectiveness and safety, remains insufficient to make decision. Many research efforts are hampered by standing problems with ‘syndrome’ recruitment failure. In addition, the outcome multiplicity induces the findings inefficiency to generalize to RA patients at large. Development of validated syndrome outcomes and methodologies has also been critical. Current efforts to enhance the understanding of integrative treatment options for patients with RA include the development of drug-specific rather than disease-specific strategies, studies in predictive biomarkers, and development of peer-review trial protocol for regular clinical trials.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)403-407
Number of pages5
JournalChinese Journal of Integrative Medicine
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 13 Jun 2015

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Complementary and alternative medicine
  • Pharmacology (medical)

User-Defined Keywords

  • clinical trial
  • integrative medicine
  • review
  • rheumatoid arthritis


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