The utilization of complementary and alternative medicine in Taiwan: An internet survey using an adapted version of the international questionnaire (I-CAM-Q)

Ching Wen Huang, Diem Ngoc Hong Tran, Tsai Feng Li, Yui Sasaki, Ju Ah Lee, Myeong Soo Lee, Ichiro Arai, Yoshiharu Motoo, Keiko Yukawa, Kiichiro Tsutani, Seong Gyu Ko, Shinn Jang Hwang, Fang Pey Chen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: In Taiwan, numerous studies have been conducted to investigate the use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). However, most of them focused on specific diseases or the use of particular methods. Therefore, the results of those studies were quite different and difficult to compare with those of studies from other countries. The International CAM Questionnaire (I-CAM-Q), meanwhile, is a unified tool that can provide comparable results for studies conducted worldwide. Thus, the aim of this study was to discover the proportions of people in Taiwan receiving CAM treatments from different types of health care providers by using an adapted version of I-CAM-Q (I-CAM-QT). Methods: I-CAM-QT was developed by translating the Korean version of I-CAM-Q (I-CAM-QK) into traditional Chinese language because of the similarity of CAM usage and doctor licensing system. This study had two stages: the first was a pretest survey used to adjust the questionnaire, while the second was an internet-based survey used to collect data from the community. Results: Of the 1200 survey respondents, 37% and 37.7% were prescribed or advised to use Chinese herbal medicine (CHM) by Western medicine (WM) physicians and traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) doctors, respectively. Other than CHM, dietary supplements and massage were the forms of CAM most commonly prescribed or recommended by WM physicians or TCM doctors. Overall, walking and relaxation techniques were the most commonly used self-help practices (used by 61.9% and 40.4% of the respondents, respectively). Additionally, 70.3% of the respondents had used at least one kind of dietary supplement in the past 12 months. Conclusion: Regarding the utilization of CAM in Taiwan, this internet-based survey revealed that CHM, dietary supplements, and massage were the types of CAM most commonly prescribed or recommended by WM physicians or TCM doctors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)665-671
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the Chinese Medical Association
Volume82
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - 2019

Keywords

  • Chinese herbal medicine
  • Complementary and alternative medicine
  • I-CAM-Q
  • Internet-based survey
  • Taiwan

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