Int Rev Neurobiol. 2017;135:233-247. doi: 10.1016/bs.irn.2017.02.011. Epub 2017 Apr 12.
Jiang D1, Li L2, Zeng BY3
1 Hallam Institution of TCM in Sheffield UK, Sheffield, United Kingdom. Electronic address: [email protected]
2 St. Mary’s Hospital Paddington, London, United Kingdom.
3 Neurodegenerative Disease Research Group, Institute of Pharmaceutical Science, Faculty of Life Sciences & Medicine, King’s College, London, United Kingdom.
Female infertility is when a woman of reproductive age and sexual active, without contraception, cannot get pregnant after a year and more or keeps having miscarriages. Although conventional treatments for infertility such as hormone therapy, in vitro fertilization and many more, helped many female patients with infertility get pregnant during past a few decades, it is far from satisfactory with prolonging treatment time frames and emotional and financial burden. In recent years, more patients with infertile problems are seeking to alternative and complementary medicines to achieve a better outcome. In particular, Chinese herbal medicine (CHM) is increasingly popular for treating infertility due to its effectiveness and complimentary with conventional treatments. However, the mechanisms of action of CHM in treating female infertility are not well understood. In this chapter authors reviewed research development of CHM applied in many infertile models and CHM clinical studies in many conditions associated with female infertility, published in past 15 years.
The data of review showed that CHM has either specific target mechanisms of action or multitarget mechanisms of action, via regulating relevant hormone levels in female reproductive system, improving ovary function, enhancing uterine receptivity. More studies are warranted to explore the new drugs from CHM and ensure safety, efficacy, and consistency of CHM.