Clinical observation finds Chinese medicine treatment helps reduce degree of coronary artery stenosis by 50%

16 April 2014


The Clinical Division of the School of Chinese Medicine recently conducted a clinical observation on over 30 patients who were treated for coronary artery stenosis at its Chinese medicine clinics. The observation showed that Chinese medicine treatment could help reduce the degree of coronary artery stenosis by 50%.

Heart disease can be fatal and is the third most commonly found illness in Hong Kong. Among the types of heart disease, coronary heart disease is the most common, with a death rate of 68%. Coronary artery stenosis and occlusion are usually found in cardiac patients, and commonly referred to as coronary heart disease. People suffering from this disease will have the symptoms of angina pectoris and are prone to myocardial infarction. Depending on the symptoms and risk, Western medicine treatment usually includes medication, percutaneous coronary intervention or coronary artery bypass surgery.

Dr. Zhang Hongxia, Lecturer at the Clinical Division, School of Chinese Medicine, announced her clinical observation on coronary artery stenosis at a media session yesterday (15 April). She said from the perspective of Chinese medicine, coronary heart disease is diagnosed as chest stuffiness and pain. The causes of this disease are mainly the deficiency of zang organs and fu organs, improper diet, fatigue, depression of “the seven emotions”, etc. The concept of “deficient root and excessive superficial” is used as the fundamental principle in Chinese medicine treatment. Chinese herbal medicine for tonifying qi, nourishing blood, supporting yang, nourishing yin, invigorating blood circulation, removing phlegm, dispersing cold, regulating qi and detoxification is generally adjusted in the treatment of coronary heart disease for both reinforcement and elimination.

Dr. Zhang conducted a clinical observation on 31 patients who had coronary artery stenosis (23 males and 8 females aged 38 to 87 years). All the patients had undergone an angiography or computed tomography medical examination and been diagnosed with coronary artery stenosis or multivessel lesions with the degree of stenosis ranging from 15% to 100% respectively. The patients all exhibited the symptoms of chest distress and pain, palpitation and shortness of breath. Eleven patients were diagnosed as having “moderate stenosis” with the degree of coronary artery stenosis ranging from 50% to 74% while obvious angina pectoris was also observed, and 15 patients had “severe stenosis” with the degree of coronary artery stenosis ranging from 75% to 100%. These patients had been recommended to undergo percutaneous coronary intervention but refused to do so and sought Chinese medicine treatment. The other five patients had undergone percutaneous coronary intervention which had failed and were classified as having “severe stenosis”. Coronary artery bypass surgery had been recommended to them but they had concerns, and had requested Chinese medicine treatment. Appropriate treatment and prescriptions were made according to the patients’ health conditions and the cause of the disease they were suffering from. The treatment period lasted from 21 days to a maximum of 16 months. 

The clinical observations revealed that out of the 17 patients who had undergone a body check-up for coronary artery stenosis, 14 patients experienced a reduction in the degree of coronary artery stenosis by 10% to 50% while there were three patients in whom no progress was observed. In general, 22 patients demonstrated a remarkable curative effect upon receiving the Chinese medicine treatment. Major symptoms like chest distress and pain, shortness of breath and palpitation were no longer experienced by these patients. The other seven patients also demonstrated a positive curative effect with an obvious reduction in the frequency of occurrence, seriousness and duration of the above symptoms. The treatment was ineffective in the remaining two patients. Overall, the results indicated that the efficacy rate of treating angina pectoris arising from coronary artery stenosis with Chinese medicine is 94%. 

Dr. Zhang said that, in general, Chinese medicine treatment is comparatively a better option for coronary heart disease patients in addition to surgery as Chinese medicine treatment helps reduce the degree of coronary artery stenosis up to 50%. Moreover, a reduction in the degree of coronary artery stenosis was observed in 78% of the patients within six months while 50% of the patients experienced a curative effect in three months. Dr. Zhang pointed out that Chinese medicine could help prevent partial lesions in blood vessels and enhance the quality of life of patients, thus demonstrating an advantage of treating this disease.


Dr. Zhang Hongxia says Chinese medicine treatment helps reduce degree of coronary artery stenosis by 50%


Chinese medicine herbs commonly used for the treatment of coronary artery stenosis