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Herbs as old potential treatments for lymphedema management: A systematic review

Herbs have been reported to be effective in reducing lymphedema burden. This paper aimed to review literature reporting on herbs for lymphedema treatment.

A systematic review was performed using the PRISMA guideline. Clinical studies on herbal intervention and lymphedema were included. Evidence on the effectiveness of herbal interventions for desired outcomes including reduction of edema volume, other symptoms, quality of life and inflammation were collected and assessed in detail.

In all twenty studies were included in this review. Of these 14 studies were randomized clinical trials and the rest were prospective pilot studies. Herbal treatment was reported for breast cancer-related lymphedema in most studies and coumarin was the most reported herb that used for lymphedema management. Edema volume reduction (17 out of 20) and symptoms improvement (15 out of 20) were the outcomes reported in most studies.

Phytochemicals can be a promising pharmacotherapy for lymphedema management. However, further evidence is needed to establish definite effectiveness for the use of herbal remedies for lymphedema management.

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Journal Article
Sheikhi-Mobarakeh Z
Yarmohammadi H
Mokhatri-Hesari P
Fahimi S
Montazeri A
Heydarirad G