Effect of an herbal capsule on chronic constipation among menopausal women: A randomized controlled clinical trial

Document Type: Original Research Article

Authors

1 Department of Midwifery, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, Iran

2 Department of Traditional Medicine, Faculty of Traditional Medicine, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, Iran

3 Department of Midwifery, Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, Iran

4 Department of Midwifery, Social Determinants of Health Research Center, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, Iran

Abstract

Objective: Chronic constipation is frequently observed in postmenopausal women. An herbal combination including clover plants, Roman anis or Anisone, green anis or fennel, green raisins, Alhagi maurorum, violets, Terminalia chebula, senna and golqand has been introduced in traditional books as an effective laxative. Thus, the present study aimed to assess the effectiveness of the combined herbal capsule on chronic constipation in postmenopausal women.
Materials and Methods: This triple blinded, randomized placebo-controlled trial was conducted on 64 postmenopausal women. Individuals were randomly assigned to combined the herbal capsule and placebo groups. The herbal capsule included cloves (4 units), Anise and Anison (6 units each), violet flowers (12 units), Terminalia Chebula and fresh green raisins (25 units each), senna leaves, Alhagi maurorum, and Golqand (50 units each). Constipation questionnaire and the individual’s assessment of constipation symptoms scale were used for data collection.
Results: The mean frequency of bowel movements in the herbal capsule group was significantly higher than the placebo group (mean difference=4.2; 95% confidence interval: 0.3 to 4.5; p<0.001). Straining during defecation, stool amount, incomplete defecation, sensation of obstruction during defecation, and need for manipulation to facilitate removal of stools were significantly reduced in the herbal capsule group compared to the placebo group (p<0.001). The amount and consistency of defecation was also improved in the two study groups, but a significant difference was observed between the groups (p<0.001). The mean score of constipation symptoms in the herbal capsule group was significantly reduced compared to the placebo group (-15.4; -11.5 to -19.29; p<0.001).
Conclusion: Consumption of herbal capsules improved chronic constipation in postmenopausal women.

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