Traditional Chinese medicine syndrome distribution in chronic hepatitis B populations: A systematic review

Xiao Xi Zeng, Zhaoxiang BIAN*, Tai Xiang Wu, Shu Fei Fu, Eric Ziea, Wong Taam Chi Woon

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)


Many patients with chronic hepatitis B (CHB) seek help from traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). TCM treatment is based on syndrome differentiation. This study aimed to investigate the syndrome distribution in populations of CHB patients. The pre-specific search strategy was set, and 93 studies (20,106 participants) were identified by electronic and hand searches. The methodological quality of included studies was assessed. Data on syndrome distribution and correlations between syndromes and severity of CHB, were extracted and analyzed. Forty-seven syndromes were identified under 24 different syndrome diagnosis systems for CHB. The majority of included studies reported Liver Depression and Spleen Deficiency (LDSD) (52.54% of studies) or Liver-Gallbladder Dampness Heat (LGDH)/Dampness-Heat Obstructing Middle Energizer (DHME) (32.20%) as the major syndromes in CHB patients without cirrhosis. Pooled analysis revealed that LDSD and LGDH/DHME accounted for 61.19% of participants without cirrhosis. In addition, Liver-Kidney Yin Deficiency (LKYinD) (40.99%) and Spleen-Kidney Yang Deficiency (SKYangD) (40.43%) syndromes were common in patients with severe CHB. The percentage of patients with Blood Stasis syndrome increased as the disease progressed to cirrhosis (32.09%). To conclude, LDSD and LGDH/DHME syndromes are found in a significant majority of CHB patients, particularly in the early stages. LKYinD, SKYangD and Blood Stasis dominate in patients at more advanced stages. More epidemiological studies of high methodological quality on syndrome distribution in CHB and standardization of syndrome differentiation for CHB are required to confirm the trends indicated by the studies reviewed here; confirming these trends can increase the efficacy of treatment and give guidance to doctors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1061-1074
Number of pages14
JournalAmerican Journal of Chinese Medicine
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2011

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Complementary and alternative medicine

User-Defined Keywords

  • Chronic Hepatitis B
  • Distribution
  • Epidemiology Study
  • Syndrome Differentiation
  • Systematic Review
  • Traditional Chinese Medicine


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