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Effectiveness and Safety of Herbal Medicines for Induction of Labour: a Systematic Review and Meta-analysis

Zamawe, C; King, C; Jennings, HM; Mandiwa, C; Fottrell, E; (2018) Effectiveness and Safety of Herbal Medicines for Induction of Labour: a Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. BMJ Open , 8 (10) , Article e022499. 10.1136/bmjopen-2018-022499. Green open access

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE: The use of herbal medicines for induction of labour (IOL) is common globally and yet its effects are not well understood. We assessed the efficacy and safety of herbal medicines for IOL. DESIGN: Systematic review and meta-analysis of published literature. DATA SOURCES: We searched in MEDLINE, AMED and CINAHL in April 2017, updated in June 2018. ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA: We considered experimental and non-experimental studies that compared relevant pregnancy outcomes between users and non-user of herbal medicines for IOL. DATA EXTRACTION AND SYNTHESIS: Data were extracted by two reviewers using a standardised form. A random-effects model was used to synthesise effects sizes and heterogeneity was explored through I2 statistic. The risk of bias was assessed using 'John Hopkins Nursing School Critical Appraisal Tool' and 'Cochrane Risk of Bias Tool'. RESULTS: A total of 1421 papers were identified through the searches, but only 10 were retained after eligibility and risk of bias assessments. The users of herbal medicine for IOL were significantly more likely to give birth within 24 hours than non-users (Risk Ratio (RR) 4.48; 95% CI 1.75 to 11.44). No significant difference in the incidence of caesarean section (RR 1.19; 95% CI 0.76 to 1.86), assisted vaginal delivery (RR 0.73; 95% CI 0.47 to 1.14), haemorrhage (RR 0.84; 95% CI 0.44 to 1.60), meconium-stained liquor (RR 1.20; 95% CI 0.65 to 2.23) and admission to nursery (RR 1.08; 95% CI 0.49 to 2.38) was found between users and non-users of herbal medicines for IOL. CONCLUSIONS: The findings suggest that herbal medicines for IOL are effective, but there is inconclusive evidence of safety due to lack of good quality data. Thus, the use of herbal medicines for IOL should be avoided until safety issues are clarified. More studies are recommended to establish the safety of herbal medicines.

Type: Article
Title: Effectiveness and Safety of Herbal Medicines for Induction of Labour: a Systematic Review and Meta-analysis
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2018-022499
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2018-022499
Language: English
Additional information: This is an open access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited, appropriate credit is given, any changes made indicated, and the use is non-commercial. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/.
Keywords: complementary and alternative medicine, herbal medicine, induction of labour, pregnancy outcomes
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute for Global Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute for Global Health > Infection and Population Health
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10059797
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