Prof. Ernst and researchers from the Korea Food Research Institute in Sungnam reviewed the evidence.

First, the details.

  • 20 electronic hand-searches without language restrictions were conducted.
  • The quality of the studies was assessed using the Jadad score.
  • 7 studies were worth reviewing.

And, the results.

  • Collectively the evidence suggests effectiveness of red ginseng (Panax ginseng).
  • The total number of patients studied and the design of the studies were too poor to draw definitive conclusions.

The bottom line?
The authors concluded there is “suggestive evidence for the effectiveness of red ginseng in the treatment of erectile dysfunction.”

For perspective, here are the results of a study of red ginseng. The authors admit the study had too few participants to permit statistical analysis.

  • Sexual desire and intercourse satisfaction improved.
  • Orgasmic function and overall satisfaction did not improve.
  • 60% of men reported improved erections.
  • Penetration and maintenance were better.
  • No attempt was made to get the partners’ reaction to red ginseng.

A PubMed search since first posting this summary revealed nothing new.

10/2/08 20:47 JR; updated 10/19/10 22:05 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.