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A Great Trick For Healing Wounds

December 28, 2006 | 16,089 views

Insulin, a hormone generally known for regulating blood sugar levels, can also speed up the healing process when it is applied directly to the skin.

Rats treated with topical insulin healed wounds faster. The same result was found in follow-up studies on human skin cells in culture.

Insulin stimulates human keratinocytes, which are cells that regenerate the epidermis after wounding. It also caused microvascular endothelial cells, which restore blood flow, to migrate into the wounded tissue.

The insulin causes these effects by switching on cellular signaling proteins called kinases and a protein called SREBP.

These results may help explain why diabetes, a disease caused by impaired production or utilization of insulin, is connected to poor healing.


Dr. Mercola's Comments:

When I mention insulin, it's typically in relation to the fact that most people have blood levels that are far too high. This is one of the primary physical reasons why most people develop chronic illnesses.

I was really amazed to find this amazing tip as I was reviewing some of the more than 4000 articles I review every week to find topics to post in this newsletter. Most don't realize that for every study you read here I reject over 100.  The intention is to perform a comprehensive review for you to save you time and find the BEST and most current health information out there for you.

This remind me of the trick I learned 25 years ago, when I was a resident, of using super glue for wounds (I read about it in a letter to the editor in the British Medical Journal). I used it with great success in many of my ER rotations, and even today, it's still used as a simple way to close simple wounds (particularly face wounds, where it can help prevent unsightly scarring.)

Although I don't see patients anymore, I would most definitely try this new trick. In any event, I'll likely give it a try personally if I ever have a wound, as it seems like a great wound healer enhancer.

I was so intrigued with this idea that I decided to personally contact the lead researcher, Dr. Martins-Green and was able to connect with her yesterday.

Unfortunately she could not share any specific details as her university is considering some type of product based  on this research. She did agree to contact me when she had more information that she could share.

However, the reason she embarked on this is that insulin is very safe, especially in small doses with virtually no side effects.

So, although she was unwilling to share the details this does not seem that hard. It would seem a few units of insulin dissolved in a few cc of sterile saline and dropped over the wound would go a long way towards healing the wound.  If I had a wound I would certainly consider applying some sterile saline with a few units of insulin in it to speed up the healing.

Duoderm To the Rescue

However, one of the best tricks I ever learned on wound healing is the use of Duoderm which I first learned of in residency about 25 years ago. It is really amazing especially for burns. It seems to consistently virtually eliminate all the pain of a burn once it placed over the wound.

Duoderm is a skin dressing that is available without a prescription and typically comes in 4 inch by 4 inch squares (other sizes are available).  All you do is simply clean the wound with hydrogen peroxide and then cut the Duoderm about half an inch larger than the wound. It typically sticks very well to your skin unless you are wrapping it around a digit in which case you will need to apply some extra tape.

You can leave the Duoderm on for one week before you need to change the dressing. After a few days it looks like pus might be coming up under the wound but it is merely the dressing dissolving.

This system really does work quite miraculously. I have never seen any technical reasons why it works so well but having researched microcurrents in the body about ten years ago, my guess is that it improves healing by faciliating the reestablishment of the subtle electric currents that become disrupted when a wound occurs.

It somehow completes the circuit and allows the energy to flow once again. If you have a hard time finding this you can get Duoderm on Amazon. It is something I believe everyone should have in their medicine cabinet.

Pretty amazing stuff and much easier to work with the unknown insulin issue.

[+] Sources and References

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