Alternative Treatment for Graves Disease
Graves Disease is an autoimmune disorder that causes the immune system mistakenly attacked healthy tissue. Grave’s disease affects the thyroid gland which is located at the front of the neck. With Graves’s disease, the body overproduces the hormones thyroxine and triiodothyronine which control cell metabolism. This overproduction is known as hyperthyroidism.
Thyroid hormone affects metabolism, and its deficiency causes many of the body’s functions to slow down. An estimated twenty percent of the population suffers from thyroid conditions. It is more common among women than men.
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Symptoms of Graves Disease
Lee BC, Kang SI, Ahn YM, Doo HK, Ahn SY. An alternative therapy for graves’ disease: clinical effects and mechanisms of an herbal remedy. Biol Pharm Bull. 2008 Apr;31(4):583-7. Graves’ disease, the most common cause of hyperthyroidism, is an autoimmune disorder. Antithyroid drugs have been selected as the first-line treatment of Graves’ disease in Korea, Japan, and European countries. However, antithyroid drugs such as methimazole (MMI) and prophylthiouracil (PTU) have limitations in clinical applications because of their side effects. In this study, we performed a clinical trial and in vitro study to investigate the clinical effects and action mechanism of Ahnjeonbaekho-tang (AJBHT), an herbal remedy for Graves’ disease. In a clinical study of Graves’ disease patients who had side effects from antithyroid drugs, we found that treatment by AJBHT resulted in a reduction of serum triiodothyronine (T3) and free thyroxine (FT4) levels and an increase in thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) levels (T3: p<0.0001, FT4: p=0.0012, TSH: p=0.0370, respectively). In vitro, AJBHT significantly inhibits FRTL-5 cell proliferation, DNA synthesis, cyclic AMP production, T4 synthesis, and the expression of thyroglobulin (Tg) mRNA in comparison with the control. These results suggest that AJBHT might suppress T(4) synthesis by modulating adenosine 3′,5′-cyclic monophosphate (cAMP) and Tg expression, and therefore, AJBHT could be an alternative therapy for Graves’ disease patients who have side effects from antithyroid drugs. doi: 10.1248/bpb.31.583. PMID: 18379045.