A pilot clinical study of an add-on Ayurvedic formulation containing Tinospora cordifolia and Piper longum in mild to moderate COVID-19

J Ayurveda Integr Med. 2022 Apr-Jun;13(2):100454. doi: 10.1016/j.jaim.2021.05.008. Epub 2021 Jun 10.


Background: After declaration of COVID- 19 as pandemic by WHO, countries adopted several measures to contain the spread as well as test and treat the patients. Further, as no effective management protocols to address this pandemic were available, a need was felt to explore the integration of modern and traditional medicines to treat COVID- 19 cases.

Objective: To undertake a study with Ayurveda formulation as add on to existing standard of care (SOC) and to compare the outcomes in terms of patient acceptability, the time to clinical recovery, hospital stay as well as any signs of drug-herb interaction between the Ayurveda formulation and the SOC.

Material and methods: An exploratory nonrandomized prospective study has been undertaken for comparing the outcomes of traditional Ayurvedic classical formulation of Tinospora cordifolia (Guduchi) and Piper longum (Pippali) as an add on to standard of care (SOC) using modern medicine with SOC alone. This has been done in mild and moderate COVID- 19 cases, at a tertiary care integrative Medicine hospital in the National Capital Region, Gurgaon, India. The outcomes have been evaluated in terms of the duration of hospital stay, the time to clinical recovery, safety and non- interference/interaction of Ayurvedic and Further, long term impact of COVID- 19 treatment has been evaluated using quality of life questionnaire after 3 months of discharge.

Results: Findings of present study reveals that the Ayurveda add-on formulation of T. cordifolia (Guduchi) and P. longum (Pippali) has reduced the length of hospital stay and improve the recovery time. General feeling of wellbeing and activity levels were better in the 3 month follow-up post discharge in the Ayurveda add-on group.

Conclusion: Addition of Ayurveda formulation has reduced the time of recovery and duration of hospital stay. However, this formulation needs further investigated to provide more information on effective and safe herbal add-on to SOC for better outcomes to treatment of COVID-19 disease.

Keywords: Ayurveda; COVID-19; Piper longum; Tinospora cordifolia.