The Power of Traditional Chinese Herbal Medicine in Cardiac Care

The Power of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) in Cardiac Care

Today, we would like to share a review of the mechanism of action and pharmacological properties of a multi-component herbal medicine called Xin Su Ning (XSN) in the treatment of cardiac arrhythmia. You can listen to this review through this podcast.


This research was carried out by Dr Yu-Ling Ma and colleagues in the Oxford Chinese Medicine Research Centre at the University of Oxford. By using a novel multichannel system encompassing a computational model to aid in the quantitative analysis of TCM, Dr. Ma and her team confirmed that XSN, composed of eleven separate herbal elements and with a particular focus on arrhythmias caused by the build-up of phlegm and heart in certain areas of the body (defined by TCM theory),  can regulate cardiac function via the modulation of potassium and sodium channels, and acts in a similar way to prescribed antiarrhythmic drugs by using cellular electrophysiological techniques. Furthermore, XSN showed significant protective and restorative effects in injured heart muscle cells. In concerns of toxicity, animal studies involving hugely inflated doses conducted showed no pathological changes or adverse reactions in the organs and bodily systems of any of the participants.

Traditional Chinese Medicine has been used in the treatment of disease for centuries, although its potency is often overlooked by researchers. We wish more researchers can explore other TCM formulas with novel methods or pathways in the future.

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