Surgeons Consider Use Of Honey As Antibiotics Replacement

October 22, 2007 at 3:06 pm Leave a comment

Surgeons are saying honey can be used in stead of antibiotics to disinfect wounds. A few spoonfuls of honey on a wound and inflammation is alleviated and swellings are reduced. Honey doesn’t only speed up the healing process; it even impedes tumors.

That is what researchers point out in a study published in the October issue of the International Journal of Clinical Practice. If applied at regular intervals, honey can sterilize wounds in three to ten days.

The researchers warn that people should leave dosage up to the experts, but they add that they themselves apply honey anywhere between hourly to twice daily.

“Honey is one of the oldest foods in existence and was an ancient remedy for wound healing” explains Dr Fasal Rauf Khan from North West Wales NHS Trust in Bangor, who took the lead in the research. He adds that pots of honey were found in the tomb of King Tutankhamun; still edible, undeniable proof that it doesn’t spoil. Rauf Khan believes that honey is especially useful for healing wounds left by laparoscopic surgery to remove cancers. The qualities of this foodstuff making it such an effective disinfectant include its sugar content, gluconic acid, hydrogen peroxide. And honey has a low moisture content.

Honey used to be the standard application in medicine, but the invention of antibiotics in 1940 halted its use. Honey is on the rise again because people are concerned about immunity to antibiotics when it is prescribed repeatedly.

The research into the antimicrobial properties of honey draws on eighteen other studies carried out over 60 years. The research also included other, seemingly old wives’ remedies used for wound healing, the most notable of which is the application of maggots. This cure also used to be popular in wound disinfection before the introduction of antibiotics. Dr Rauf Khan’s team discovered an ancient manuscript detailing how to use wine dregs, juniper prunes and beer as wound disinfectants. Dr Rauf Khan stresses he’s not tried and tested these alternatives!

Researchers have also reported that applying honey can be used to reduce amputation rates among diabetes patients.

Stressing that patients should always check with their surgeon before applying any substance to post-operative wounds, Dr Khan adds that studies have found that honey offers a number of benefits.

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Entry filed under: Green News.

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