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Traditional Chinese Medical Care and Incidence of Stroke in Elderly Patients Treated with Antidiabetic Medications

Department of Chinese Medicine, Dalin Tzu Chi Hospital, The Buddhist Tzu Chi Medical Foundation, Chiayi 62247, Taiwan
Department of Chinese Medicine, Taipei City Hospital Zhongxing Branch, Taipei 10341, Taiwan
Department of Chinese Medicine, China Medical University Hospital, Taichung 40447, Taiwan
Department of Sport and Health Management, Da-Yeh University, Changhua 51591, Taiwan
Department of Chinese Medicine, Show Chwan Memorial Hospital, Changhua 50008, Taiwan
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(6), 1267;
Received: 5 May 2018 / Revised: 4 June 2018 / Accepted: 13 June 2018 / Published: 15 June 2018
Objectives: Experimental research has shown that herbal and traditional Chinese medicines (TCM) may serve as complements to Western medicine treatments in the control of blood glucose and cardiovascular complications, but population-based studies are limited. We investigated the association between TCM use and subsequent risk of stroke in older patients with diabetes. Study design: The database used in this cohort study contained longitudinal medical claims for one million subjects randomly selected among beneficiaries of a universal health care program in Taiwan. We identified a cohort of patients with diabetes aged 65 years and older who initiated anti-diabetic medications from 2000 to 2012. Patients who had at least two TCM outpatient visits after their initiation of anti-diabetic medications were considered TCM users. Main outcome measures: The incidence of stroke was measured until 2013. Cox regression models with TCM use as a time-dependent variable were used to calculate the adjusted hazard ratios (HRs) comparing TCM use with no use. Results: Over the 13-year period, 17,015 patients were identified; 4912 (28.9%) of them were TCM users. The incidence of stroke during the follow-up (per 1000 person-years) was 22.8 in TCM users and 25.7 in non-users. TCM users had an adjusted HR of 0.93 for the incidence of ischemic stroke (95% confidence interval [CI] 0.83, 1.04) and of 0.89 for developing hemorrhagic stroke (95% CI 0.66, 1.19), compared with non-users. Conclusions: In this study, in older patients receiving Western medicine treatments for diabetes, TCM use was not associated with an increased risk of developing ischemic stroke and hemorrhagic stroke. View Full-Text
Keywords: diabetes; stroke; traditional Chinese medicine diabetes; stroke; traditional Chinese medicine
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Chiao, Y.-W.; Chen, Y.-J.; Kuo, Y.-H.; Lu, C.-Y. Traditional Chinese Medical Care and Incidence of Stroke in Elderly Patients Treated with Antidiabetic Medications. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15, 1267.

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