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  1. 11 Nov 2014
    Garlic for the common cold Updated
    Background Garlic is popularly believed to be useful for the common cold. This belief is based on traditional use and some laboratory evidence that garlic has antibacterial and antiviral properties. On average, adults have two to four common colds per year. Study characteristics The evidence is current to the 7 August 2014. Of the eight studies ...
  2. 27 Oct 2014
    Decongestants, antihistamines and nasal irrigation for acute sinusitis in children
    Review question The goal of this review was to determine whether there is any evidence in the medical literature for or against the use of decongestants, antihistamines and nasal irrigation for acute sinusitis in children. Background Young children experience an average of six to eight colds per year. Out of every 10 children with a cold, one develops ...
  3. 25 Oct 2014
    Probiotics for preventing ventilator-associated pneumonia
    Review question To critically assess the current evidence from published studies relating to the effect of probiotics for preventing ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP). Background VAP is a condition that can occur in patients who have been mechanically ventilated for more than 48 hours and can significantly increase the likelihood of death within ...
  4. 29 Jun 2014
    Zinc supplements for preventing middle ear infections
    Background Middle ear infections are common, especially among young children, usually causing earache and some temporary (occasionally permanent) hearing loss. Zinc is an essential micronutrient, which has a role in the optimal functioning of the immune system and resistance to infection. It must be consumed regularly as it cannot be stored in the ...
  5. 20 Feb 2014
    Echinacea for preventing and treating the common cold Podcast
    Preparations of the plant Echinacea are widely used in some European countries and in North America for common colds. Echinacea preparations available on the market differ greatly as different types (species) and parts (herb, root or both) of the plant are used, different manufacturing methods (drying, alcoholic extraction or pressing out the juice ...
  6. 18 Jan 2014
    Acupuncture for mumps in children
    Acupuncture has been used to treat children with mumps for hundreds of years in China. Benefits attributed to acupuncture include decreased swelling and pain, and shortening of the disease duration. According to traditional Chinese medicine, health is achieved by maintaining an uninterrupted flow of Qi, or energy, along 14 meridians. Mumps is caused ...
  7. 16 Jan 2014
    Vitamin A for preventing blindness in children with measles
    Annually 500,000 children become blind worldwide, 75% of them living in low-income countries. The major causes of blindness in children vary widely from region to region and are related to the standard of living of the community. Corneal scarring from measles, vitamin A deficiency, use of harmful traditional eye remedies and ophthalmia neonatorium (newborn ...
  8. 22 Oct 2013
    Pelargonium sidoides (Umckaloabo), a herbal remedy, for treating acute respiratory tract infections
    Umckaloabo is a herbal extract derived from the plant Pelargonium sidoides (P. sidoides) and is available in both tablet and liquid forms. The extract is used for the treatment of acute respiratory tract infections (ARIs) where antibiotic use is unnecessary. In the light of inappropriate antibiotic use and increasing drug resistance rates worldwide, ...
  9. 8 Aug 2013
    Vitamin C for preventing and treating pneumonia
    Pneumonia is an infection of the lungs usually caused by bacteria and viruses. Its clinical diagnosis is sometimes difficult. Pneumonia is more common in young children and in the aged. In low-income countries it causes two million deaths annually among young children. In the USA it is the most common cause of death from infection. Vitamin C was identified ...
  10. 18 Jun 2013
    Zinc for the common cold
    The common cold is often caused by the rhinovirus. It is one of the most widespread illnesses and is a leading cause of visits to the doctor and absence from school and work. Complications of the common cold include ear infection, sinusitis and exacerbations of reactive airway diseases. There is no proven treatment for the common cold. However, an even ...

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