Effects of red ginseng upon vascular endothelial function in patients with essential hypertension

Am J Chin Med. 2000;28(2):205-16. doi: 10.1142/S0192415X00000258.


This study is to estimate the effect of Korean red ginseng on vascular endothelial cell dysfunction in patients with hypertension. Seventeen patients with hypertension who were divided into ginseng-treated (7) and non-treated (10) groups and 10 normotensive subjects were included. To assess the function of the vascular endothelial cell, changes of forearm blood flow to infusion of acetylcholine, sodium nitroprusside and bradykinin in incremental doses were measured by venous occlusion plethysmography. In the ginseng-treated hypertensive group, forearm blood flows at the highest dose of acetylcholine and bradykinin were significantly higher than those of the non-treated hypertensive group and were not different from those of the control group. In the case of sodium nitroprusside infusion, no significant differences were observed between the control, non-treated and treated groups. In conclusion, Korean red ginseng can improve the vascular endothelial dysfunction in patients with hypertension possibly through increasing synthesis of nitric oxide.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acetylcholine / pharmacology
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Bradykinin / pharmacology
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal / pharmacology*
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal / therapeutic use
  • Endothelium, Vascular / drug effects*
  • Endothelium, Vascular / physiology
  • Female
  • Forearm / blood supply
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / drug therapy*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nitroprusside / pharmacology
  • Panax / therapeutic use*
  • Phytotherapy*
  • Plants, Medicinal*
  • Plethysmography
  • Regional Blood Flow / drug effects
  • Vasodilator Agents / pharmacology*
  • Vasodilator Agents / therapeutic use


  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal
  • Vasodilator Agents
  • Nitroprusside
  • Acetylcholine
  • Bradykinin