Another role for aloe vera: tackling mouth ulcers

Aloe vera is an effective treatment for a skin disorder and could be used to treat mouth ulcers, researchers say.

Gels containing extracts from the plant were found to ease the burning, stinging pain and ulcers associated with oral lichen planus, a chronic inflammatory disorder of the mouth.

Affecting more than 1 in 100 people, persistent mouth ulcers due to lichen planus can give rise to cancerous changes within the ulcer, and so need to be monitored by a doctor. Previously the condition has been hard to treat, but a study in the British Journal of Dermatology confirms anecdotal reports that aloe vera gel could help to soothe symptoms.

A team of Thai dermatologists examined 54 patients, half of whom were treated with a topically applied aloe vera gel while the other half received a placebo.

A total of 81 per cent of the patients treated with aloe vera had a good response after eight weeks of treatment, while only 4 per cent of placebo patients had a similar response.
Where improvement did occur, it was on a significantly greater scale in those treated with aloe vera – symptoms improved by more than 50 per cent in 63 per cent of aloe vera patients, whereas only 7 per cent of the placebo patients had this level of improvement.

Source - Times

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