Effectiveness ofCuscuta planifloraTen. andNepeta menthoidesBoiss. & Buhse in Major Depression: A Triple-Blind Randomized Controlled Trial Study

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Depression is one the most common mental disorders that can be seen all over the world. In traditional Persian medicine, some medicinal herbs are recommended for depression treatment. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of Cuscuta planiflora Ten. and Nepeta menthoides Boiss. & Buhse in patients with major depression.


This study is a randomized triple-blind controlled clinical trial conducted in the year 2010 in Shiraz University of Medical Sciences on patients with major depression. Pharmaceutical capsules of Cuscuta planiflora (500 mg) and Nepeta menthoides (400 mg) were prepared by a pharmacist. Patients were randomly assigned to 3 groups: group A (treated with Nepeta menthoides capsules and conventional drugs), group B (treated with Cuscuta planiflora capsules and conventional drugs), and group C (treated only with conventional drugs). The study period was 8 weeks and depression was measured before and after the study by Beck Depression Inventory and Hamilton Depression Inventory. The data were analyzed by SPSS version 20 and the P < .05 was considered statistically significant.


A total of 43 subjects participated in this study, of whom 81.4% were females (n = 35) and 18.6% were males (n = 8). The mean ± standard deviation of age of the participants was 38 ± 10.9 years. The majority of patients (65.1%, n = 28) were married. There were 15 patients (34.9%) in group A, 13 (30.29%) in group B, and 15 (34.9%) in group C. There was a significant decrease in mean scores of Beck and Hamilton depression inventories in the 3 groups after treatment (P < .01); moreover, there was more decrease in scores of the Beck and Hamilton depression inventories in groups A and B compared with group C after treatment (P < .01).


Despite the paucity of the population under study, the findings showed that Cuscuta planiflora and Nepeta menthoides capsules could be effective, affordable herbal medicines with improved cost-benefit in treatment of major depression and it is worth designing further and more extensive studies to get to a more accurate conclusion.

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