Robson, V., & Cooper, R. (2009). Using leptospermum honey to manage wounds impaired by radiotherapy: A case series. Ostomy Wound Management, 55, 38–47.
To assess the effect of leptospermum honey as a primary dressing for managing wounds with radiation-impaired healing
The cases involved patients who experienced fragile friable areas of damaged skin that did not respond to conventional treatment. Patients 1, 2, and 4 had long-term effects from radiation therapy treatment received several years or months earlier. Patient 3 experienced short-term effects from radiation therapy treatment received immediately before referral. Dressings to suit the condition of the wound had been applied before referral. The study product, Medihoney Antibacterial Honey is a mix of gamma-irradiated, sterile Australian and New Zealand leptospermum honeys, licensed in the United Kingdom and indicated for use in chronic wound care.
The study took place at the Wound Clinic in a United Kingdom hospital.
The study used a case series design.
In all cases, a change from conventional dressings to the topical application of honey was followed by a noticeable improvement in healing. No adverse events were observed and even though one patient had type 2 diabetes, daily honey applications to her wound had no adverse effect on her blood sugar levels. All patients readily accepted honey as a dressing for their wounds.
No adverse events were reported. Honey as an adjunct to conventional wound and skin care post radiation therapy shows promise for less painful healing in these chronic wounds. Prospective, randomized, controlled clinical studies are needed to confirm these observations.