Salve and Burdock: A Safe, Effective Amish Remedy for Treatment of Traumatic Wounds?
Amish patients show a demonstrated preference for traditional, herbal remedies over modern medical interventions such as skin grafting. One such remedy is a mixture of Burn & Wound Ointment (B & W Ointment; Holistic Acres, LLC; Newcomerstown, Ohio) and steeped burdock leaves. Although both have demonstrated some antimicrobial and wound healing properties, burdock and/or the combination of B & W Ointment and burdock has never been studied to determine its purported ability to reduce pain, prevent infection, and accelerate wound healing.METHODS:
A retrospective chart review was performed on 6 Amish patients treated with salve and burdock leaves instead of skin grafting following complex traumatic wounds to determine whether the traditional treatment incurred any patient harm.RESULTS:
The time of wound epithelialization and healing complications were noted, among other data points. Time to full epithelialization ranged from 1 to 7 months. Time to full wound healing was proportional to wound size.CONCLUSIONS:
Although the treatment presented here is unconventional, it did not cause harm to the patients studied.