The effect of green tea ointment on episiotomy pain and wound healing in primiparous women: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial
The delayed healing of episiotomy wound and its associated pain is a major problem in obstetrics. Because green tea has analgesic and wound-healing properties, the present study was conducted to determine the effect of green tea ointment on episiotomy pain and wound-healing. The green tea extract was also standardized by measuring its Phenolic and flavonoid compounds, antioxidant activity, and one of its active components, that is, Epigallocatechin gallate. The present clinical trial was conducted on 99 primiparous women visiting Afzalipour Hospital in Kerman in 2015. The subjects were randomly divided into 3 groups, including a green tea ointment group, a placebo ointment group, and a routine care group. The 2 ointment groups smeared 2 cm of the green tea or placebo ointments onto their sutured area twice daily for a total of 10 days. The severity of pain was assessed in the subjects using the visual pain scale and wound-healing using the Redness, Edema, Ecchymosis, Discharge, Approximation (REEDA) scale before the intervention and on the 5th and 10th days after delivery. To standardize the extract, Epigallocatechin gallate was measured by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Phenolic and flavonoid compounds, as well as antioxidant activity of the extract were also determined by spectrometry methods. Before the intervention, no significant differences were observed between the 3 groups in terms of their personal and obstetric details (p > .05), the severity of pain (p = .118), and the REEDA score (p = .212). On the 5th and 10th days after delivery, the severity of pain was significantly lower in the green tea group than in the other 2 groups (p < .0001). The mean REEDA score on the 5th and 10th days showed a better and faster healing in the green tea group compared to the other 2 groups (p < .0001). Total content of phenolic and flavonoids contents of green tea were 74.2 mg/g Gallic acid equivalent and 16.3 mg/g Rutin equivalent, respectively, and its antioxidant capacity was 46% of b-carotene. Green tea ointment appears to be effective in relieving episiotomy pain and improving wound-healing in this study. Further studies are recommended to be conducted on the effectiveness and safety of the different doses of green tea ointment.