Effects of Ginkgo biloba on mental functioning in healthy volunteers

Cieza, Alarcos, Maier, Petra and Pöppel, Ernst (2003) Effects of Ginkgo biloba on mental functioning in healthy volunteers Archives of Medical Research, 34, (5), pp. 373-381. (doi:10.1016/j.arcmed.2003.05.001). (PMID:14602503).


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Background: There has been a lack of investigations examining the effects of Ginkgo biloba extract EGb 761® on mental functions and quality of life in healthy subjects with no cognitive impairment. Thus, the objective of the present study was to evaluate the relatively short-term (i.e., 4 weeks) effects of EGb 761® on mental functioning and quality of life in healthy volunteers.

Methods: The trial was conducted as a 4-week, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel-group, monocentric study. Sixty six healthy volunteers aged between 50 and 65 years without age-associated cognitive impairment were randomized, 32 into the placebo and 34 into the EGb 761®-treatment group (240 mg, tid). Safety and compliance were monitored after 1, 2, 3 and 4 weeks.

Primary outcome measures in this study are the subjects' judgment of their own mental health (MH), their general health (GH) and their quality of life (QoL) operationalized on the basis of three different visual analog scales (VAS). Secondary outcome measures are 15 tests and experimental procedures based on a neurobiologically based classification or taxonomy of functions.

Results: Intergroup differences in self-estimated mental health as well as self-estimated quality of life were significant in favor of EGb 761®. No intergroup differences were found in self-estimated general health. Secondary outcomes supporting the notion of superiority of the active drug were found for both motor performance and emotional evaluation. This study did not reveal evidence of unknown drug-induced side effects or intolerance. No serious adverse events were observed during the study.

Conclusions: Both questions treated in this study, efficacy and safety, are important from a medical perspective because many persons take the agent studied in an effort to enhance their mental functioning and general well-being. The findings of this study support the adequacy of intake of EGb 761® to improve the functions indicated previously.

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1016/j.arcmed.2003.05.001
ISSNs: 0188-4409 (print)
Keywords: ginkgo biloba, elderly, cognitive function, randomized clinical trial, neuropsychologic tests, phytotherapy, plant-extract pharmacology, plants, medicinal, central nervous system agents

Organisations: Psychology
ePrint ID: 342079
Date :
Date Event
September 2003Published
Date Deposited: 11 Aug 2012 12:16
Last Modified: 17 Apr 2017 16:42
Further Information:Google Scholar
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/342079

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