refers to an accumulation of pus anywhere on the body.
The most common body areas where abscess occur are the
face, armpits, female breast (especially during lactation),
rectum, and on the extremities (fingers and toes). Abscess
is usually caused by bacterial, fungal, or viral infection,
and can also be due to parasites.
Symptoms of abscess include swelling, tenderness, or
redness (often with a sensation of being hot to the
touch) in and around the infected area. A severe abscess
can cause fever, cellulitis, (buildup of cellulite due
to inflammation of cellular tissue associated with pus
formation), fatigue, weight loss, chills, abnormal functioning
depending on the area affected or, at worst, blood infection
What To Consider
Abscess can result from allergic infections, boils,
nutritional deficiencies, poor diet, and/or poor immune
response. If abscesses are chronic or recurrent, this
may be a sign of food, environmental, or chemical allergies.
External abscesses that are mild may respond to gentle
heat from warm water soaks and to improved nutrition.
Most abscesses, however, need to be treated with antibiotics
or herbs. Supplementing with acidophilus (especially
if antibiotics are used) and B vitamins, as well as
increasing fluids is recommended. The need for specific
other treatment measures, such as drainage, compression
bandage, or surgery, should be assessed by a holistic
physician or health practitioner.
Abscesses that are moderate to severe may require bed
rest, local ice packs, or hot baths. Incomplete drainage
may result in fibrous wall with calcium accumulation
resulting in a hardened mass. Abscesses may be caused
or worsened by decreased immune functioning. In most
cases, an abscess should start to clear up in several
days. A failure to clear up or bouts of reoccurrences
may indicate serious problems with immune functioning
and overall health and require professional care. Assess
your lifestyle to reduce areas of stress or other problems
that may be contributing to a decrease in general health
and immune functioning, and get plenty of rest.
If your abscess is recurrent, this may indicate an imbalance
in your body and the need for a bowel cleanse and rejuvenation
Increase liquids such as filtered water, fresh vegetable and
fruit juices. Avoid all stressor foods, especially refined
sugars, and alcohol for at least two weeks. Also avoid
cow's milk dairy products and processed foods and drink
water with the juice of one fresh squeezed lemon upon
rising and before going to bed. If your abscess is chronic,
eat plenty of organic berries (fresh or frozen) or drink
berry leaf teas.
The following nutrients are all useful for treating
abscess and can be used in combination with each other:
Additional supplements that can be considered include
liquid chlorophyll, Lactobacillus acidophilus
and Bifidobacteria culture (several times per
day), garlic capsules, and proteolytic enzymes (taken
on an empty stomach).
- vitamin A (50,000 IU for two weeks),
- beta carotene (100,000 IU for two weeks),
- B-complex vitamin formula,
- vitamin C (5-10 grams daily),
- and zinc (60 mg. daily for two weeks).
A hot compress of bergamot, tea tree, lavender, chamomile, garlic oils
can bring relief of abscess symptoms and help to speed
A short (48-hour) water or juice fast to encourage more
rapid detoxification and healing is often helpful in
cases of chronic abscess.
Apply Rescue Remedy Cream to the area of healthy skin
around the abscess (but not on top of or in the abscessed
area) four times a day.
Burdock root, cayenne, dandelion root, echinacea, goldenseal,
red clover, yarrow, and yellowdock root, taken as tinctures
or as teas, either individually or in combination, can
help boost immunity and therefore help hasten healing.
Belladonna, Merc sol., Hepar sulph., Silica, and
Bryonia can all be useful for treating abscess.
Use a paste of goldenseal root powder and calendula
succus (the juice of the marigold flower). Place
the paste over the abscess and leave it on twelve to
twenty-four hours. It will often draw out the infection,
while stimulating regeneration of the damaged tissues.
As an alternative, apply a mixture of zinc oxide cream,
the squeezed contents of one vitamin A capsule (10,000
IU), and liquid chlorophyll on external abscesses three
times daily. If all three are not available use whichever
you can obtain. Another alternative is to apply raw,
unprocessed honey to infected area.
If your symptoms persist despite the above measures,
seek the help of a qualified health professional.
Back to Health Conditions A to Z