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Healing a wound with vinegar at home

Tracy Woolrich's picture
Healing wound

Wounds can be difficult to heal. In fact they can sometimes be downright stubborn. If the wound becomes infected with a resistant organism, it may take weeks or months for complete healing. One of the more resistant germs is Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Over time this bacteria has become resistance to many antibiotics and disinfectants. This is most likely due to antibiotic overuse. This is becoming a dangerous trend.

I worked in home health care for many years and specialized in wound care. I found it to be very rewarding to watch a wound heal. What I found fascinating is that what could be termed as folk medicine healing was very effective. The most effective methods for wound healing was using household items such sugar, honey, Clorox or vinegar. A solution using Clorox and water could be made for pennies in comparison to the expensive Dakins solution and Vinegar with distilled water could be used instead of Acetic Acid. Vinegar contains 8% acetic acid which is its main component. I started to research this and in time was able to get physicians to get on board with me allow for alternative healing mechanisms. This was especially useful for a noncompliant population that could not afford the more expensive solutions. Studies now show that not only does vinegar solution work, it is sometimes more effective that traditional antibiotics.

What is a Pseudomonas infection?

This infection is caused by a strain of bacteria that is found commonly. The bacterium is called Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Healthy individuals can often fight off these types of infections rather easily. If you have a weakened immune system, the infection can become rather serious. It is spread by improper hand washing techniques and sometimes contaminated equipment. It is treated generally with antibiotics. Unfortunately, this bacterium, just like many others, is becoming more difficult to treat because of increasing antibiotic resistance. If wounds infected with this type of bacteria can be treated with something as simple as a vinegar solution, it will help quell additional resistance.


Numerous studies have been done in the lab showing that acetic acid was helpful in eradicating infection. Human studies however always show the most promise. During one study, seven hospitalized patients with wound infections were selected. These patients were not responding to traditional therapy for at least one week. A culture of the wound drainage was conducted and they all had Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections that were resistant to four or more antibiotics. A topical solution of 3%-5% acetic acid was applied to the wounds for 2 to 12 times with 100% success in eliminating the organism. No other antibiotics were used during the study. The most amazing outcome during that study was of a wound that was not responding to traditional antibiotic treatment for a month using a total of 15 different antibiotics. However after using 5% acetic acid irrigations and wound washes it healed. These wounds were not insignificant either. They included abscesses, post operative wounds and foot ulcers. Every single one of them responded with complete elimination of the bacteria. It was concluded that “3% acetic acid is nontoxic, inexpensive and efficient topical agent for effective elimination of P. aeruginosa from superficial infection site. It is the best alternative when infection is caused by multiple antibiotic resistant strains and where there is shortage of therapeutic options. It is good to know that there is scientific proof to back up what I learned decades ago.

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Wound healing at home

So what if you have a wound at home and you don’t have a clue if it is infected, or if it is what it is infected with? No problem. Vinegar is one of those classic “does no harm” treatments. More and more doctors and specifically dermatologists and surgeons are relying on the miracle of vinegar.

Here is a classic wound care treatment plan.

• Cleanse the site with one tablespoon of white vinegar in one pint of distilled water. Allow the solution to remain on the site as a “soak” for 10-15 minutes.
• Dry the area and apply a small amount Vaseline or wound ointment.
• Place a dressing or band-aid over the wound.
• Repeat this process daily.

Simple enough right? Sometimes simple truly is better.

Take away message
Always seek the advice of your healthcare professional if you have a non-healing wound. Remember wound healing, as in everything, is a very individual process. Several factors can interfere with healing such as age, stress, medications, nutrition, and smoking. Educating yourself on the influence of these factors may improve your wound’s healing

Reference: CDC, Bioline

What home remedies do you use to heal wounds naturally? Please, share them in the comments section below. Also, please see this first effective treatment for Diabetic Foot Ulcers: wound healing dressing.



another great use for vinegar!
Vinegar IS a wonderful household item. From cleaning your counters to healing your wounds. How great is that?
Ive always thought Of Vinegar As A Natural Healing Agent....though I Never Really tried It Until Tonight. Off And On This Year Ive dealt With An ingrown Toe Nail. And Pus Is Forming So I Soaked my Foot In Vinegar And Baking soda. After squeezing out What I Could I Added Pure Vinegar To The Open Wound. Already Feel A Relief!
Vinegar is great. Will kill warts too!
can you use vinegar to heal boils this is a open wound please let me know how to heal these boils using vinegar. thank you I await to hear from you.
I am using it... it feels like using deep alcohol to cleanse and heal the area
Pls i need you help i have open wound in butt bcz of boil pls let me know what can i do to heal my wound pls help me
I once got rid of boils on my legs by spraying them with colloidal silver, one sold by Swanson Health Products by the name of Silver Biotics. After a few days, they dried up and did not return.
well when I was in the hospital with a very bad infection with cellulitis they used a vinegar soak on both of my legs and yes it did bring a lot of relief to my legs and helped with the infection and it made it go away a lot faster that was Sioux falls SD. the docs their really knew what they were doing so yes I have faith in vinegar. since I have had a lot infections like all the time
How often did they soak...and was it washcloth soak or full on bath soak? Hubby is fighting cellulitis.
I have started using vinegar on my wound it's leg
Hi, yep vinegar is amazing! AND ACV even better. BUT I will never use Vaseline on my body petroleum product yuk. I have once cleaned I use only pure organic coconut oil, results are amazing.
vinegar a great wound dresser that any one especially at home can use
A couple of months ago, I had a fingernail that went bad or got damaged for some reason. I have no idea or recollection how it got to be that way. It got to be a real pain or nuisance being that it would not heal. It seemed like forever. Some how I got the idea to try and soak it in pure white 5% vinegar. To my complete shock and surprise it began to heal right in front of my eyes. I actually could see and watch it heal. I did not believe my eyes at first, nor until after it was all healed and looking back. This was an experiential reality changing learning process for me. I only soaked it for about 5 or 10 minutes the first time/day. It took me time to figure out if it was real. I did it again the next day. Same thing happened, I saw more healing. Then I think I forgot to do it the next day. Then I remembered to do it again on the fourth day. It pretty much healed completely by around the fifth day. This really got me to thinking. I am still awed. What is the power of healing with vinegar? Next time, if such an unfortunate experience of some wound occurs, I will keep it in the vinegar or vinegar on the wound for as long as possible to see how long healing will take place in the presence of vinegar. And while I am here, I want to mention that the best thing for healing burns is; as immediately after as possible, cover the burn area with plain white flour. It prevents oxidation. The speed of healing is also miraculous. According to a story online, is that this was discovered by accident by military guys when one some how got severely burnt or scalded. I forget what happened. But another guy who was there at the time, did not know what to do and in a panic saw the only thing available was a bag of flour and threw flour over the damaged area. The relief and healing was almost immediate. I tried it on a finger burn from a hot stove and it worked very well.
I have a bad wound from stepping on a nail 6 months ago .still not healing used vinegar tonight hope I don't lose my foot
How did your wound do?
I use pure vinegar when I burn myself! The relief is right away! The assistant cook where I work burned herself on the grill taking out food from the stove! It was hurting her and getting infected! I told her to use vinegar! She didn't want to cause she said it would hurt! Half an hour later she came to me and ask for my vinegar! She couldn't believe with the instant relief! The next day all the redness and swelling was gone! You could only see the mark where she touched the grill and it wasn't hurting at all!! Vinegar is fantastic on sunburn!!
I've had a boil on my elbow (EEEKS!). Sinister staph probably. Within 24 hours of applying ACV, I could see the whole thing drained out and healed. What a wonder drug.
I woke up Saturday with a cut with small amount of pus around it Monday it got real bad went to the doc got augmentin and a cream called supirocin but it has been leaking frm ever since shud I dress it
If using vinegar on my open wound helps heal it I will be amazed & forever grateful. The leg was diagnosed with cellulitis after a hip aspiration. The leg was already compromised by many hip procedures. The cellulitis was treated by IV antibiotics. Then came along an abcess on a mastectomy incision which was also treated the same after more surgery. The wound did seem to clear up in rehab but after 2 weeks home it started to get bad. Wound care 3x/week & no relief. Time will tell.
Let us know what happened after you used the vinegar....
My MIL had cancer and her wounds/ bed sores were horrible and big. the normal household vinegar did wonders... really amazing
I have little cuts all over my hands and wrists from my tree and just poyred vinegar over my hands and it burned like hell. Thinking I should not have put the vinegar on my hands.
You need to dilute the vinegar. Two tablespoons to two cups of water.
Can I be able to use vinegar in a fissure
I'd been using vinegar diluted w water to get fleas off my feet n out of my hair n even furniture too. I also used it to wash off my body w paper towels and had it in spray bottle, to then put on clean night clothes. I discovered I had a boil on my breast that had already opened n drained n scabbed over like it was cauterized. Vinegar is ALL I use now when I get a diabetic boil. I'm immune to antibiotics and this IS a MIRACLE WOUND CURE!! I figured it out by accident! Thank you for your page!!!! People need to know this!!
Would like to have as much info as possible on pseudomonas. I had sepsis one yr ago due to urinary infections and was in coma for 10 days not expected to live. I did live but seem to get repeated infections on heel of my rt foot where I had surgery 6 yrs ago. It is pseudomonas and now being treated with Dakins solution. It is now healing but how do I keep from getting again?
I've had good success with 1/3 white vinegar, 1/3 apple cider vinegar, and 1/3 water. Mix all together and put into a clean Dollar store type spray bottle. It helped heal an open wound I had much quicker than antibiotic ointments were doing.