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Ginkgo biloba has 'no effect' on dementia

Ginkgo biloba has 'no effect' on dementia
31st December 2009

A major study has written off ginkgo biloba as an extract which can treat dementia.

The randomized, double-blind and placebo-controlled study was funded by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine and was conducted at six medical centres across the US.

After consulting more than 3,000 people between ages 72 and 96 over the course of seven years, scientists revealed to the Journal of the American Medical Association that the traditionally-used Chinese extract is useless at combating the neurodegenerative disorder.

The paper explored a number of avenues to see if ginkgo biloba had any effect on such things as cognitive decline in older adults such as memory, attention, visual-spatial construction, language, and executive function.

Lead author of the paper Steven DeKosky, the dean of the University of Virginia School of Medicine, branded the results "disappointing news".

In the UK, around 700,000 people have dementia, though this number is expected to rise to one million within the next generation.

Read more about Barchester's dementia care homes.