Dec 21, 2010 12:56 AM GMT
http://www.annals.org/content/153/12/769.abstract?aimhpResults: Of the 719 patients enrolled, 713 completed the protocol. Mean age was 33.7 years, 64% were female, and 88% were white. Mean global severity was 236 and 258 for the blinded and unblinded echinacea groups, respectively; 264 for the blinded placebo group; and 286 for the no-pill group. A comparison of the 2 blinded groups showed a 28-point trend (95% CI, −69 to 13 points) toward benefit for echinacea (P = 0.089). Mean illness duration in the blinded and unblinded echinacea groups was 6.34 and 6.76 days, respectively, compared with 6.87 days in the blinded placebo group and 7.03 days in the no-pill group. A comparison of the blinded groups showed a nonsignificant 0.53-day (CI, −1.25 to 0.19 days) benefit (P = 0.075)...
Conclusion: Illness duration and severity were not statistically significant with echinacea compared with placebo. These results do not support the ability of this dose of the echinacea formulation to substantively change the course of the common cold.
So blinded echinacea works better than unblinded echinacea? Is it because the placebo effect is at work?
Not taking a pill seems to be the only group with no benefit.
I.e. use your money to buy several cans of chicken soup instead, and take a pill but don't try to guess what the pill contains.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/12/20/got-a-cold-study-says-ech_n_799386.htmlIt was funded by the National Center of Complementary and Alternative Medicine, part of the National Institutes of Health. The center, set up to test herbs and other alternative health remedies, has spent $6.8 million testing echinacea since 2002.
The center's director, Dr. Josephine Briggs, said there are no plans to support more human research on echinacea.
"I think what we're seeing is pretty clear. If there's a benefit of echinacea, it's very modest, Briggs said.