Topical application of propolis for diabetic foot ulcer healing

This feasibility study found that topical propolis is a well-tolerated therapy for wound healing and indicates for the first time that it may enhance wound closure in this setting when applied weekly to diabetic foot ulcers.

Results: Ulcer area was reduced by a mean 41% in the propolis group compared with 16% in the control group at week 1 (P<0.001), and by 63 vs. 44% at week 3, respectively (P<0.05). In addition, 10 vs. 2% (P<0.001), then 19 vs. 12% (P<0.05) of propolis treated vs. control ulcers had fully healed by weeks 3 and 7, respectively. Post-debridement wound fluid active MMP-9 was significantly reduced, by 18.1 vs. 2.8% week 3 from baseline in propolis treated ulcers vs. controls (P<0.001), as were bacterial counts (P<0.001). No adverse effects from propolis were reported.

A multi-site randomized controlled of topical propolis now appears to be warranted in diabetic foot ulcers.

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