Purpose: To explore the use (prevalence and related factors) of Chinese herbal medicines used by pregnant women.
Methods: We used multistage stratified systematic sampling to recruit 2048 postpartum women from the Taiwan national birth register between November and December 2003. Subjects underwent a home interview 6 months after their deliveries. A structured questionnaire was successfully applied to 87% of the sampled population.
Results: At least one Chinese herbal medicine was used during pregnancy by 24.1% of the interviewed subjects. Pregnant women with threatened abortion appeared to use more Chinese herbal medicines than other pregnant women.
Conclusion: Chinese herbal medicines are frequently used by pregnant women in Taiwan and are very frequently used by those with a threatened abortion.