The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog ran from 2006 to 2016 and was intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

  • Recent Posts

  • Recent Comments

    Maggots, and leeches, and honey, oh my!

    In this time of MRSA (methacillin-resistant Staph aureus) skin infections, Medscape reviews 3 CAM wound treatment options.

    Here are the highlights.

    Medicinal maggot therapy

    • Sterilized larvae of the green bottle fly Lucilia sericata.
    • Don’t reproduce nor feed on live tissue.
    • They ingest and degrade bacteria in their intestinal tract.
    • Also secrete an enzyme that disinfects the wound, dissolves necrotic tissue, and stimulates wound healing.
    • Approved by the FDA in 2004 as the first live organism marketed in the US.
    • Reimbursable by Medicare.

    Medicinal leeches (Hirudo medicinalis)

    • FDA-approved as a medical device in 2004 (after maggots received clearance).
    • Works by several mechanisms: inhibit blood clotting and promote local bleeding, antibiotic properties, and local anesthetic.

    Medicinal honey to treat wounds

    • Honey is comprised of glucose (35%), fructose (40%), sucrose (5%), and water (20%).
    • Works by several mechanisms: nutrition to promote healing, kills bacteria by drawing away water (hyperosmotic), contains an enzyme that produces hydrogen peroxide (antibacterial).
    • Supported by human and animal studies.
    • Available as Medihoney.

    Read more here about Medihoney, maggot therapy, and medicinal leeches.

    A more technical review is here.


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