Quince (Cydonia oblonga Mill) is a popular medicinal herb in different traditional medicines. Concentrated quince fruit extract, also known as quince sauce (QS), is traditionally used for the treatment of a variety of gastrointestinal disorders. The aim of this study was to compare the efficacy of QS versus ranitidine on gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) in pregnant women. We compared the efficacy of 4 weeks of ranitidine (150 mg, twice daily) with the efficacy of QS (10 mg, after meals) on 137 pregnant women with GERD. Their General Symptom Score (GSS) and Major Symptom Score (MSS) were compared at the baseline, 2 weeks and 4 weeks after intervention. After 2 weeks of the study, the mean GSS score of the QS group was significantly lower compared with the ranitidine group (p = .036). Although, the GSS value at the end of the study had no difference between groups (p = .074). However, the MSS of the different symptoms of the two groups at 2 weeks and 4 weeks had no significant differences. It seems that the efficacy of QS for the management of pregnancy-related GERD is similar to ranitidine. Impact statement What is already known on this subject? Quince is a traditional gastric tonic, an appetiser, and a remedy for nausea/vomiting and epigastric pain. Also, there are several previous positive experiences about quince products for GERD treatment. What do the results of this study add? It seems that the efficacy of QS for the management of pregnancy-related GERD is similar to ranitidine. What are the implications of these findings for clinical practice and/or further research? QS can be suggested as an alternative medicine for pregnant patients with GERD.
Keywords: Mill; Gastroesophageal reflux disease; herbal medicine; pregnancy; quince; traditional Persian medicine.