Archive for November, 2010

“The most important foundation of medicine is love.” -Paracelsus (the father of medical science)

I have two people to thank for the amazing healing that is being accomplished at clinic:

1. God

2. Anamed

It is a truly mind-boggling adventure to see the things that bring healing from what God has provided for us through His creation. I see it on a daily basis as certain grains and plants wipe away malnutrition, malaria, cancer and other conditions that result from a lack of certain vitamins and minerals.

I read in Exodus 15:22-27 about how God purified the water for the Israelites to drink by throwing a tree in to the river (Moringa, was that you?), and in Psalm 51:7, which speaks of the cleansing properties of hyssop (beneficial also for lung conditions, throat infections, wound care and to stop infection), John 19:39-40 mentions aloe (for burns, constipation, cancer, skin irritations), Matthew 2:10-11 on frankincense (dysentery, gonorrhea, fever), Numbers 11:5-6 on garlic (angina, cancer, colds, diabetes, hypertension, worms, infection), Esther 2:12, Matt 2:10-11, Gen 43:11, Song of Solomon 1:13, mentioning myrrh (analgesic, astringent, bronchitis, expectorant, high cholesterol), and the list goes on.

I see the things God has blessed us with and I am seeking out opportunities to use them to bring healing to those I am caring for.

In my herbal studies, I have stumbled upon an organization whose sole purpose is the scientifically seek out natural remedies for those with no access to modern medication. Their standards on allowing EVERYONE the benefits of their research are far above reproach and their love for each person is reflected in their desire to bring health and healing to everyone throughout the world.

And I quote, “In Natural Medicine, we believe that scientific knowledge should belong to everyone, and be just as available as love for the sick, and should not be paid for with money. In this age intellectual property rights are a hotly debated issue. The worldwide exchange of information about God’s pharmacy costs nothing, and helps us all, of whatever rank or status, to become more knowledgeable, and therefore more self-reliant and inter-dependent.” –Natural Medicine in the Tropics 1: Foundation Text. Anamed.

Can I get an ‘amen’ please!

I have purchased a number of their books and one of the herbal remedies I have used is a wound paste made out of 20 parts honey, 10 parts quality vegetable oil, and 3 parts beeswax. I cannot tell you how miraculous this poultice truly is. I started my patient on the paste the second time I saw him and his wound has healed at an incredible rate!

The man was in a motorcycle accident about 3 weeks before I saw him and the wound on his ankle had become infected and opened up all the way to the bone. When I saw him, he had cellulitis and the wound was full of slough (yucky tissue) and very little beefy granulation tissue (needed for healing).

Within four days of daily wound cleansing and application of the poultice, the infection was gone and there was about 50% granulation tissue showing. In a matter of 3 weeks, he has more than tripled the amount of good tissue, the bone is almost covered with new tissue and there continues to be no infection!

Although I do not have the amount of language I would need to fully express how amazing this is, I see the joy in his face as I explain that his wound is healing and he is doing a wonderful job taking care of it.

He has so many amazing friends that bring him to clinic every Tuesday and Saturday (he sits on the seat of a bicycle while his friends push him down the road) and help take care of his wound. They may not realize this, but I love the fact that they are also learning how to take care of wounds properly with resources that are readily available to them!

There is also a woman who sits next to him on the mat, possibly his wife, and cries over him as I treat his wound. The minute I have my translator tell them how wonderful it is, she stops crying and a smile emerges! Beautiful! I can only imagine how hard it might be for them right now if he is the sole breadwinner of the family and has been out of work for months.

There is so much love in this culture! So much love! I wonder if Paracelsus wasn’t right in saying love plays one of the largest roles in healing. They care for one another here in a way that brings healing to the body, mind and soul.

What a blessing it is to be here!

Thank you, God.

Thank you, Anamed.

Local beeswax

Filtering the larvae out of the beeswax (I loath worms)

Larvae up close and personal!


Melting down the wax in my 'beaker'

Final Product! Honey Poultice!

1st time seeing the wound.


Status Post 2 1/2wks of honey poultice...AMAZING!



There are so many things to love about Ethiopia. Would you like to hear about something that I hate?

Let me tell you a little story about Ethiopian flies (also known as uduntia [you-doon-tia]) and why they create raging fires of wrath within my bones.

I’ll begin with American flies: kind of gross things that fly around, land on things, vomit, eat their vomit, make an annoying noise, occasionally land on your pants, all in all not such a big deal flies. They are easily killed with a swatter or sticky paper.

Ethiopian flies: filthy creatures that suck on the snotty-nosed children’s eye boogers, land on the festering wounds I’m cleaning, land on pools of who knows what kind of infected blood, and then LAND ON MY LIP.

I cannot fully explain the depth of anger/disgust that flows within the pits of my soul as fly after fly takes a repulsing route from one filthy thing to the next. The only thoughts in my mind naturally lean toward the millions of diseases that are being passed from one innocent person to the next and all I can do is flail my arms and rear my head like a crazy forenge (white foreigner) each time one lands on my face.

This pretty much paints a beautiful picture of what each day of clinic looks like for me. By the grace of God we do not have any flies in our home, so I have a refuge from this filthy plague (I don’t understand how the plague of flies wasn’t the last straw for the Egyptians…it would have ended the problem for me…Israelites gone).

Should we happen to start having flies in our humble abode, I will be purchasing a large number of shaaqanchchas (chameleons) that live in your house plants and eat your flies all day long. I think God created shaaqanchchas for people like me.

I just had an image of a shaaqanchcha on my shoulder during clinic days. I think it was a revelation.

Praise the Lord for shaaqanchchas!

My best friend.