The Efficacy of Traditional Chinese Herbal Medicine in the Treatment of EGFR Mutated Stage IV Pulmonary Adenocarcinoma Patients Who Received First-Line EGFR-TKI Treatment

Hsiu Ying Hung, Yen Han Tseng, Chia Miao Liao, Sung Yi Chen, Ta Peng Wu, Yu Chin Lee, Yuh Min Chen

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3 Citations (Scopus)


Background. Chinese herbal medicine (CHM) has been used for thousands of year in Eastern countries. First-line epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI) treatment is the standard treatment in stage IV pulmonary adenocarcinoma patients who had tumor EGFR mutations. This study was to find the efficacy of CHM on lung cancer treatment. Materials and Methods. We retrospectively reviewed chart records of our stage IV EGFR-mutated pulmonary adenocarcinoma patients who received first-line EGFR-TKI treatment from January 2010 to September 2014. Results. Total, 527 patients were studied. Among them, 34 patients received CHM treatment, including 24 patients who received CHM treatment from the beginning of first-line EGFR-TKI treatment and 10 patients who started to receive CHM treatment after their disease had progressed to EGFR-TKI treatment. Median progression-free survival (PFS) of first-line EGFR-TKI treatment was numerically better in patients who also received CHM than those who did not (12.1 months vs 10.5 months, P =.7668). Overall survival of those 24 patient who received CHM treatment together with EGFR-TKI was 30.63 months (95% CI = 11.7 to not reached), compared to 23.67 months in the remaining patients (95% CI = 21.37-26; hazard ratio = 0.75; P =.399). No increase of CHM-related toxicities was found during CHM treatment, compared with EGFR-TKI treatment alone (P >.05). Conclusion. Alternative CHM treatment during first-line EGFR-TKI treatment did no harm to the patients and PFS and overall survival was numerically better, although not significant, than those patients who did not receive CHM treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)126-131
Number of pages6
JournalIntegrative Cancer Therapies
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1 2017
Externally publishedYes



  • adenocarcinoma
  • Chinese herbal medicine
  • epidermal growth factor receptor
  • lung cancer
  • tyrosine kinase inhibitor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Complementary and alternative medicine

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