Natural remedies for anxiety disorders: potential use and clinical applications

Authors

  • Gustavo Kinrys M.D.,

    Corresponding author
    1. Depression and Anxiety Disorders Research Program, Cambridge Health Alliance, Cambridge, Massachusetts
    2. Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts
    • Department of Psychiatry, Cambridge Health Alliance-Harvard Medical School, 1493 Cambridge Street, Cambridge, MA 02139
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  • Eliza Coleman B.A.,

    1. Depression and Anxiety Disorders Research Program, Cambridge Health Alliance, Cambridge, Massachusetts
    2. Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts
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  • Ethan Rothstein B.A.

    1. Depression and Anxiety Disorders Research Program, Cambridge Health Alliance, Cambridge, Massachusetts
    2. Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts
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Abstract

Background: Natural remedies have been widely used and generally accepted as established treatments of depressive disorders, leading to the investigation of their potential role and efficacy in the treatment of the various anxiety disorders. Methods: Numerous case reports, open-label, and placebo-controlled trials investigating the use of natural remedies in the treatment of anxiety disorders have yielded some encouraging results. Results: Overall, these studies have indicated a potential role for natural remedies in the treatment of anxiety and suggest that such agents may possess a safer side effects profile when compared to conventional agents. However, these early findings, albeit promising, are yet to be supported by further investigation in large-scale, placebo-controlled studies. Conclusions: This article reviews past and present research being performed in this area of clinical interest, while also revealing a remarkable paucity of data. Depression and Anxiety, 2009. © 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

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