ABSCESS: Apply wheatgrass extract first

Wheatgrass extract reduces pain of abscess drainage and heals rapidly if applied before the operation. (Fig. 1.)

A middle-aged man was sitting on the edge of his chair in the waiting-room. He was in severe pain due to a large, “pointing” abscess on his buttock - similar to the one  in the photograph.

Fig. 1. An abscess ready to be incised and drained
Fig. 1. An abscess ready to be incised and drained

"Pointing" means the abscess is ready to be opened and drained of the pus inside. Without this procedure, the patient would suffer severe pain until the abscess burst of its own accord - which might take a painful week or two. In the photograph, the abscess is “pointing” - i.e. it's about to burst open. Urgent drainage is necessary, and is quite easy to do with a sharp scalpel. (Photo: Courtesy of Amrith Raj. Wikipedia)

The small dark spot near the top of the abscess is a “plug” of keratin that's preventing the abscess from bursting open and discharging the pus. (Because there is no blood supply inside an abscess, antibiotics are of little use, so incision and drainage is essential.)

The wound is drained of pus, then a “wick” is inserted to help drain fluid and pus from the cavity. This can be a painful procedure, but application of wheatgrass extract over the swollen area before incising can eliminate much of the pain. Also, the wound will shrink rapidly and the cavity will be eliminated, so that "packing” it with gauze is unnecessary. Instead, apply a firm dressing over the area.

Dr. Chris Reynolds.

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