Kaempferia parviflora ethanol extract improves self-assessed sexual health in men: a pilot study

J Integr Med. 2018 Jul;16(4):249-254. doi: 10.1016/j.joim.2018.05.005. Epub 2018 May 26.


Background: Sexual health positively correlates with overall wellbeing. Existing therapeutics to enhance male sexual health are limited by factors that include responsiveness, adherence and adverse effects. As the population ages, safe and effective interventions that preserve male sexual function are needed. Published research suggests that various preparations of Kaempferia parviflora, a plant in the Zingiberaceae (ginger) family, support cardiovascular health and may ameliorate erectile function.

Objective: The aim of this study was to examine the effects of KaempMax™, an ethanol extract of the K. parviflora rhizome, on erectile function in healthy middle-aged and older men.

Design, setting, participants and interventions: We conducted an open-label, one-arm study on 14 generally healthy males aged 50-68 years with self-reported mild erectile dysfunction, who were not using prescription treatments. Participants took 100 mg KaempMax™ daily for 30 days.

Main outcome measures: Evaluations were conducted at baseline and on the final study assessment. Primary efficacy analyses included the International Index of Erectile Function (IIEF); secondary efficacy analyses included the Global Assessment Question about erectile function.

Results: Thirteen participants completed the 30-day study. Supplementation with KaempMax™ resulted in statistically significant improvements in erectile function, intercourse satisfaction and total scores on the IIEF questionnaire. KaempMax™ was well tolerated and exhibited an excellent safety profile.

Conclusion: Our results suggest that KaempMax™ may improve erectile function in healthy middle-aged and older men. While the effects were not as pronounced as what might be seen with prescription medication, most participants found them satisfactory. Additional, longer and placebo-controlled clinical trials will be needed.

Trial registration: Clinicaltrials.gov identifier NCT03389867.

Keywords: Complementary therapies; Global Assessment Question; International Index of Erectile Function; KaempMax™; Kaempferia parviflora; Sexual health.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Erectile Dysfunction / drug therapy*
  • Erectile Dysfunction / physiopathology
  • Erectile Dysfunction / psychology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Penile Erection / drug effects
  • Pilot Projects
  • Plant Extracts / administration & dosage*
  • Sexual Behavior / drug effects
  • Sexual Health
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Zingiberaceae / chemistry*


  • Plant Extracts

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT03389867