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J Tradit Chin Med. 2012 Jun;32(2):148-55.

Duration of viral shedding of influenza A (H1N1) virus infection treated with oseltamivir and/or traditional Chinese medicine in China: a retrospective analysis.

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  • 1Pneumology Department, Beijing Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine affiliated to Capital Medical University, Beijing 100010, China.



H1N1 was a new and potentially serious infectious disease, in human, the severity of influenza can vary from mild to severe, thus to find an effective and safety way to control the influenza pandemic is of crucial importance. This retrospective study describes the duration of viral shedding in H1N1 patients that were hospitalized and treated in China.


Clinical data were collected from May to July, 2009 in China for 963 patients with influenza A (H1N1) virus infection. Patients were treated based on the guidelines issued by the Chinese Ministry of Health. The primary outcome was duration of viral shedding and statistical comparisons were performed.


In the patients with body temperature greater than 38.0 degrees C, there were no differences in virus shedding duration among the patients taking oseltamivir within two days, patients undergoing Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) therapy or those receiving no drug therapy. In patients with body temperature > or =38.1 degrees C, TCM therapy reduced the viral shedding duration (P < 0.05, vs. oseltamivir therapy). Furthermore, taking oseltamivir two days after onset of symptoms might prolong the virus shedding duration (P < 0.05, vs. taking oseltamivir less than 2 days of onset).


TCM therapy is effective for reducing the length of virus shedding in patients with body temperature > or =38.0 degrees C. Oseltamivir used for reducing virus shedding duration should be taken within two days of onset.

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