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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 35

of 'Complementary and alternative therapies for cancer'

Elemene for the treatment of lung cancer.
Rui D, Xiaoyan C, Taixiang W, Guanjian L
Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2007;
BACKGROUND: Elemene, isolated from the Chinese medicinal herb Rhizoma Zedoariae and be used to treat patients with lung cancer in China. Until now, the effects have not been systematically reviewed.
OBJECTIVES: The purpose of this review was to determine the effectiveness and safety of elemene in the treatment of patients with lung cancer.
SEARCH STRATEGY: We searched according to the strategy suggested by Lung Cancer group: the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (The Cochrane Library 2006, Issue 2); MEDLINE (1966 to June 2006); EMBASE (1974 to June 2006); OVID (1950 to June, 2006); CBMdisc on Chinese Biomedical Literature (Issue 1 2004 Chinese Language) and CNKI (Chinese Knowledge Internet 1994 to June 2006).
SELECTION CRITERIA: Only randomised controlled trials (RCTs) that compared elemene with chemotherapy agents, radiotherapy, surgery, physical therapy or other effective Chinese herb therapy, either alone or in combination, had been sought in this review, regardless of language or publication status.
DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS: Two authors telephoned the original trial authors of claimed randomised controlled trials and made a decision about trial inclusion and exclusion.
MAIN RESULTS: We identified 20 trials which claimed to use random allocation. Sixteen study authors were contacted by telephone and we discovered that they misunderstood the randomisation procedure and the trials were identified as non-RCTs. We were unable to contact the authors of the remaining four studies and these have been allocated to the 'Studies awaiting assessment' section.
AUTHORS' CONCLUSIONS: There is no evidence from randomised controlled trials to confirm or refute the effectiveness of elemene as a treatment for lung cancer. Randomised clinical trials, on elemene for the treatment of lung cancer are needed in order to define the efficacy and acceptability of elemene for lung cancer.