The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog is intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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    Treating tardive dyskinesia with Ginkgo biloba

    Tardive dyskinesia is a disorder that involves involuntary movements, especially of the lower face.

    Researchers at Peking University, in Beijing, China studied the value of EGb-761, a standardized extract given in capsule form, in patients with schizophrenia.

    First, the details.

    • 157 patients were randomly assigned to a treatment group for 12 weeks.
      • EGb-761, 240 mg/day
      • Placebo
    • Changes in the Abnormal Involuntary Movement Scale (AIMS) score and the proportion of patients with at least a 30% reduction in their AIMS total score were measured.
    • In addition, changes in symptoms and cognitive performance (reasoning) were recorded.
    • Neither the patients nor researchers knew the treatment given — double blind.

    And, the results.

    • EGb-761 treatment significantly decreased the AIMS total score vs placebo, with 51% vs 5% of patients responding, respectively.
    • There were no differences between treatments in symptoms and cognitive performance.

    The bottom line?

    The authors concluded, “EGb-761 appears to be an effective treatment for reducing the symptoms of tardive dyskinesia in schizophrenia patients.”

    “Improvement may be mediated through the well-known antioxidant activity of this extract,” say the authors.

    The results are important because, in the US alone, it’s estimated that tardive dyskinesia affects 2 million schizophrenia patients taking neuroleptic medications to manage symptoms. Despite this, there is still an absence effective for tardive dyskinesia in people taking neuroleptics.

    A list of neuroleptic drugs is here.

    A lot more on studies of EGb-761 is here.

    10/15/10 22:13 JR

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