Whenever I read an article about the effects of honey on repairing skin, it brings back memories of my days as a nurse when we saved a lady from amputation. The Mediherb article below, reinforces how effective honey can be when it comes to healing ulcers.
But first here is my story about the magic of honey. It was about 30 years ago now. I worked in a hospital ward that specialized in peripheral vascular disease – a condition that affects the circulation due to blocking of the arteries. In those days it was mainly smokers with the condition and many of them ended up with leg amputations.
We were looking this lovely lady who had an ulcer on her leg. She was with us for months and over that time every new type of dressing imaginable was tried on this ladies ulcer. I remember using the latest seaweed dressings which did nothing. The specialist decided that if improvement didn’t occur to the leg ulcer in two weeks, then she would need an amputation.
One of the nurses had a dad who kept bees on his farm. She brought some in and twice a day we applied the honey. We had to hide the honey, as this was not what the specialist had ordered. Day by day, we could miraculously see the edges of the ulcers granulating and growing new skin. After a week or so we let the resident doctor in on our secret who promised not to tell the registrar or the specialist. The scheduled amputation was delayed by the specialist who concluded that whatever dressing he had ordered, seemed to be working. Still we hid the honey and the nurse brought more honey from her dads farm.
About a week before they discharged the lady with a very nicely healed ulcer, we let the Registrar in on our secret. He graduated as a specialist 6 months later. It was great to hear that in the hospital he was working at, he was now recommending honey for wound healing.
We never did tell the specialist who was treating this lady, our secret. In those days you didn’t defy what the specialist said for fear of being screamed at in the middle of the ward.
Interestingly Manuka honey is being used in hospital these days, but not the raw honey that came straight off the farm. It is the pharmaceutically tested and researched version.
In the article below Mediherb summarizes the findings of a study into the use of honey in mouth ulcers.
The research backed up what we as young nurses back in the 1980’s also concluded – honey is great for ulcers.