Calendula ointment a useful after-care following episiotomy
Use of calendula ointment in women who have undergone episiotomy appears to reduce pain and promote wound healing, a study has found.
In total, 100 women (average age, 32 years) with singleton gestations in spontaneous labour and vertex presentation at term were randomized equally to use calendula ointment or receive standard care after episiotomy. Women in the intervention group were instructed to apply the ointment 4 hours after the procedure, and then every 8 hours thereafter, for 10 days.
Three women in each group delivered with vacuum. None of the women had severe perineal lacerations. Pain level, the primary outcome, was self-reported and recorded using the verbal rating scale (VRS).
Compared with those who received standard of care, women who used calendula ointment reported significantly lower pain levels starting from day 2 (mean difference [MD], –0.92, 95 percent confidence interval [CI], –1.39 to –0.45) and throughout the follow-up (day 10: MD, –0.56, 95 percent CI, –1.01 to –0.11).
Moreover, the ointment led to better wound healing in terms of redness and oedema. The improvements occurred as early as day 2 for oedema (MD, –0.30, 95 percent CI, –0.55 to –0.05) and day 3 for redness (MD, –0.44, 95 percent CI, –0.77 to –0.11).
There were no reports of serious adverse events.