SUMMARY: 47 patients with novel coronavirus (COVID-19) were assigned into the treatment group (24 subjects) and control group (23 subjects). All subjects met the diagnostic criteria of COVID-19 according to the “Diagnosis and Treatment Plan for COVID-19 (Trial Version 3, 4, 5, 6)” and the “Novel Coronavirus Pneumonia TCM Treatment Plan in Tianjin”. There was no significant difference in gender, age, clinical signs and symptoms and routine treatment between the treatment and control group, and the two groups were therefore statistically comparable (P > 0.05).
In the control group, subjects received routine treatment according to the “Diagnosis and Treatment Plan for COVID-19 (Trial Version 3, 4, 5, 6)” and “Novel Coronavirus Pneumonia TCM Treatment Plan in Tianjin”. In treatment group, subjects received Lianhua Qingwen capsules (連花清瘟膠囊), 4 capsules three times a day for 2-4 days if the symptoms were mild-moderate and meet the diagnostic criteria of “dampness stagnating the superficies (濕邪困表)” or “damp retaining in middle (濕濁傷中)” syndrome, or if the symptoms were severe and met the diagnostic criteria of “excessive phlegm heat (痰熱壅盛)” syndrome; after 2-4 days, Lianhua Qingwen capsules was discontinued and Modified Huo Xiang Zheng Qi San (Agastache Powder to Rectify the Qi 藿香正氣散加減) was used for subjects with “dampness stagnating the superficies” syndrome, while Modified San Ren Tang (Three Seed Decoction 三仁湯加減) was used for subjects with “damp retaining in middle” syndrome, and Modified Gua Lou Xie Bai Ban Xia Tang (瓜蒌薤白半夏湯加減) was used for subjects with “excessive phlegm heat” syndrome.
In the control and treatment group, body temperature, duration of hospitalization, computer tomography (CT) scan result, clinical symptom score scale (according to the scoring scaled used in the Analysis of COVID-19 and SARS Syndrome in Tianjin area) and clinical signs and symptoms (fever, fatigue, cough, expectoration) were monitored to evaluate the treatment efficacy.
Tab.1 Comparison of Time for Body Temperature Recovery and
Duration of Hospitalization between Control Group and Treatment Group（x ± s）
|Group||n||Time for body temperature recovery (d)||Duration of Hospitalization (d)|
|Control||23||6.8 ± 3.1||10.96 ± 5.07|
|Treatment||24||3.5 ± 1.8*||13.63 ± 5.85*|
Tab.2 Comparison of Clinical Symptom Scores between
Control Group and Treatment Group（x ± s）
|Group||n||Score upon Admission||Score upon Discharge|
|Control||23||6.1 ± 2.1||2.9 ± 2.2|
|Treatment||24||5.2 ± 2.1||0.9 ± 1.6*|
According to the result, both groups showed improvement in body temperature, and the treatment group recovered significantly faster than the control group (P<0.05). The improvement rate in CT scan result was 78.2% in the control group and 87.5% in the treatment group; the improvement rate in the treatment group was significantly higher than that in the control group (P<0.05). Both groups showed improvement in the clinical signs and symptoms and clinical symptom score scale; in terms of fever and fatigue, the treatment group showed a more significant improvement than the control group (P<0.05). There was no severe adverse reaction reported in both groups. The result indicated that using Lianhua Qingwen capsules in the early stage of COVID-19 have significant effects on shortening the recovery time, improving patients’ CT scan result, and reducing fever and fatigue.
Yong, Tien, et al. Tianjin Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine. 2021. 38 (10): 1236-1240