Using products from Crinum latifolium L.: be careful


By 2005, people had used the decoction from Crinum latifolium L. leaves to treat tumor diseases in folk. But since the advent of Crila allowed for nationwide circulation with the indication for uterine fibroids and BPH, hundreds of products attached with Crinum latifolium L. have been created. The strange thing is that each products has its own formula, so that consumers are confused which product has real therapeutic properties.

Matrix of products from Crinum latifolium L.

Since Dr. Tram started to study Crinum latifolium L. in 1990 and the product for uterine fibroids and BPH originating from the group of research works on Vietnamese Crinum latifolium L. was demonstrated to have good real treatment efficacy, a series of products marked to be from Crinum latifolium L. have appeared on the market. Initial estimation showed dozens of kinds with eye-catching designs including name of products, colour and packing similar to the product which has been licensed by the Ministry of Health while the majority are just supplements. Their common thing is that their ingredients consist of Crinum latifolium L. combined with other herbs such as Celastrus hindsii, Gynostemma pentaphyllum, Ganoderma lucidum, Paeonia veitchii, Panax notoginseng, Curcuma longa powder or ginseng. These products are advertised to have the ability to dispel worry about tumors, enhance treatment of fibroids and cysts, reduce prostate fibroids and tumors, which makes patients confused if not read carefully.

According to People’s Teacher – Prof. Dr. Pham Thanh Ky – former rector of Hanoi University of Medicine, many herbal drugs have the same ingredients. The reason is that some manufacturers use scientists’ research work in order to supplements with similar effects. However, their research have been registered for copyright and protection and transferred to specific manufacturing unit. Enterprises having no research work and technological transfer compel to combine other herbs to be licensed in the form of supplements. But according to Prof. Pham Thanh Ky, any herbal medicine should be researched methodically from acute to subchronic. So as to ensure high safety of products, we need to study its effects on reproduction, chromosomal structure, test its pharmacological effects in vivo, then evaluate the treatment efficacy clinically under the regulation of the Ministry of Health. After that, the product can be allowed for circulation.

The opinion of insiders

Pharmacist – Dr. Nguyen Thi Ngoc Tram – a scientist having many years of experiences on Crinum latifolium L. said that since 1990 she has selected the variety which is discovered and collected based on distinct genetic characteristic (DNA), botanically morphological features and chemical composition and developed in large-scale to obtain materials for Crila production. This sample is a new variety of Vietnamese Crinum latifolium L. named Crinum latifolium L. var. crilae, Tram & Khanh.

From the research of Dr. Tram and her national and international colleagues, Crila is formulated with the indication for the treatment of BPH and uterine fibroids. The ministry-level subject ‘Evaluation of treatment effect of Crila medicine from Crinum latifolium L. on BPH’ mastered by Prof. Dr. Tran Duc Tho of VN National Institute of Gerontology. The research results showed that after 2 months of Crila therapy, 89.18% of studied patients achieved good treatment efficacy. The Council of Science evaluated this subject to be excellent. ‘Evaluation of Crila’s efficacy and acceptability in treatment of uterine fibroids’ mastered by Dr. Vuong Tien Hoa of National Maternity Hospital. Clinical studies indicated Crila has high treatment efficacy for uterine fibroids at 79.5% (size less than 6cm). The medicine has high safety without side effects and adverse effects on body’s functions. Both subjects were highly evaluated to be excellent by the Council of Science – the Ministry of Health.

Clinical trials were performed at Central Gerontology Hospital, Central Traditional Medical Hospital and HCMC Hospital of Traditional Medicine, the results showed that Crila capsule can reduce 33-93% of urinary symptoms. 90% patients had their prostate size reduced, some others backed to normal size and got urination organ healthy after 2 months of therapy. Until now, Crila is the first herbal medicine in the world for uterine fibroids in women.

More carefully

So far, many oriental medicine manufacturers, traditional physicians and patients thought that it is the only purebred species with the same effects but different origins. In fact, it’s not true.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. in Science Tran Cong Khanh – Director of Center for Research and Development of Ethno-medicinal Plants (CREDEP) recommended people need to pay special attention to searching for and processing Crinum latifolium L. by themselves so as to ensure therapeutic properties because there is nonhomogeneousness in Crinum population. Be careful with Crinum latifolium L. since there are many Crinum plants looking like Crinum latifolium L.

Even the same Crinum latifolium L. having different soil and caring regulations will generate distinct active substances, then different effects. People’s Teacher Prof. Dr. Pham Thank Ky affirmed that the combination of herbs may be good or may reduce its effects, even causing harm to body. The most important thing is that the combination needs studying and demonstrating through its result tests. Not all combination can create good products.

Reported by Tran Thang