Due to the large number of patients, high mortality rate as well as high social costs and economic burden, Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease(COPD)has become one of the most important health problem around the world, which has attracted people's attention. Currently, Chinese herbs have been widely used as alternative medicine(CAM)for COPD patients. Chinese herbal formula San-Huang Gu-Ben Zhi-Ke(SHGBZK)have shown good clinical efficacy in COPD in preclinical studies. Animal experiments have enhanced that it has mucosal immune barrier function, it can maintain airway wall integrity, reduce inflammatory cell infiltration, promote inflammatory damage repair, and relieve airway narrow conditions.
The study is a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. A total of 100 COPD patients at stable stage that diagnosed with syndrome of deficiency of lung qi and spleen qi will be recruited and randomly assigned to one of the two treatments group, with 50 in each group. One hundred COPD patients were randomly assigned to two treatment groups（SHGBZK treatment, N=50; placebo treatment, N=50).The two groups will receive basic treatment for COPD according to the 2017 GOLD Guidelines for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. Patients will stick to the treatment they used to take as much as possible, and will be given present general treatment when AECOPD occurs during the study. Both groups will receive an 24-weeks intervention, and patient status was assessed at 24 weeks later and 28 weeks after treatment. After the 24-weeks treatment, another 28 weeks will be followed up. The outcome measures including the frequency and duration of acute exacerbation, lung function, TCM symptom score, exercise capacity, and quality of life will be assessed.
It is hypothesized that SHGBZK will have beneficial effects in reducing the frequency and duration of acute exacerbation, improving exercise capacity function of COPD patients at stable stage that diagnosed with syndrome of deficiency of lung qi and spleen qi. This study may establish a new method for COPD patients, and thus differentiation from other drugs used for similar clinical indications in clinical use.