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Psychopharmacol Bull. 1995;31(1):147-58.

Natural substances in psychiatry (Ginkgo biloba in dementia).

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New York University Medical Center, NY, USA.


Natural substances and/or their synthetically developed active ingredients are frequently used in medicine. In psychiatry, two of the most well known natural compounds are reserpine and Ginkgo biloba extract (EGb). EGb is among the most popular over-the-counter medicines in Europe and is also available in the United States, primarily in health food stores. Already the European medical community has recognized EGb as an effective compound in the treatment of cerebral insufficiency. In a pilot bioequivalency study, the effects of three different commercially available EGb products were examined. Findings indicated significant quantitative central nervous system (CNS) effects in, at least, one of the three. Furthermore, the CNS effects of Ginkgold were similar to other psychoactive compounds classified as cognitive activators. Recent studies in which EGb 761 demonstrated therapeutic effects in the treatment of dementia have earned EGb the approval of the German BGA (Bundesgesundheit Amt) for use in the treatment of dementia.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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