Sweet enough

Sporting Gun - - Letters - JAN­UARY 2019

A good friend is smit­ten by the use of Manuka honey on any mi­nor wounds his dogs re­ceive. Does it work?

Neil says: Ah, the great Manuka honey de­bate. Cer­tainly its mar­ket­ing ranks along­side that of tea tree oil and Guin­ness, but its ef­fi­cacy is ques­tion­able. The­o­ries ex­ist on the ben­e­fits of ap­ply­ing honey to wounds, in­clud­ing its hy­per­os­mo­lar ef­fect, the pres­ence of low con­cen­tra­tions of hy­dro­gen per­ox­ide (which is an­timi­cro­bial), anti- in­flam­ma­tory prop­er­ties and ef­fects on lym­pho­cytes and mono­cytes. I have col­leagues who swear blind by it, but the dif­fi­culty in ad­e­quately ap­ply­ing it, the cost and lack of ev­i­dence that it re­ally does make a dif­fer­ence leaves me in­dif­fer­ent. A 2015 study by Jull, Cul­lum and Dumville sug­gested it might help par­tial-thick­ness burns and in­fected post-op­er­a­tive wounds to heal more quickly, but oth­er­wise the ev­i­dence was “of low qual­ity”. I am not a fan. I guess I am sweet enough al­ready...

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