Bee Venom Apitherapy

Apitherapy is the medicinal use of honeybee products, including honey, pollen, propolis, royal jelly and bee venom. This practice is over 2000 years old and the world scientific literature contains more than 1500 articles on bee venom alone.

Bee venom is a rich source of enzymes, peptides, and biogenic amines. There are at least 18 active components in the venom, which have pharmaceutical properties including melitten, apamin, adolapin, hyaluronidase, dopamine, serotonin, and mast cell degranulating protein to mention a few. Some of these compounds have strong anti-inflammatory and pain relieving effects, while other enhance nerve condition, soften scar tissue and improve one’s mood and immune system. The exact mechanism of how bee venom works is not entirely known yet.

Traditionally, bee venom was administered with live bees by stimulating them to sting in the affected area and is still used this way by lay practitioners. Most doctors nowadays inject the harvested venom by needle according to specific treatment protocols. Bee venom ointment is also available for topical use.

This therapy is useful in a wide variety of medical situations, however there are four areas that seem to be the most benefited.

  1. arthritis and other systemic inflammation (rheumatoid and osteoarthritis, gout, scleroderma, lupus, ankylosing spondylitis, ulcerative colitis, asthma,… etc.)
  2. acute and chronic injuries (bursitis, tendonitis, sprain/strain, post MVA, lumbago, pack pain, fibromyalgia etc.)
  3. neurological disease (very helpful in multiple sclerosis, neuritis, sciatica, post herpetic neuralgia etc.)
  4. scar tissue (scar tissue from previous surgeries, adhesions, keloids, etc.)

Treatments are given 2-3 times weekly initially and then as needed to maintain improvement. Chronic illness can require one-six months to achieve full benefit. Side effects are rare and “allergic reactions” are usually not seen, as most people are not allergic to honey bees but to hornets, yellow jackets or wasps. Emergency medicines are always kept on hand.

Dr. Swetlikoff is one of the few physicians in North America that uses bee venom therapies and has done so since 1989. It truly is one of nature’s most powerful healing agents.

Kelowna Naturopathic Clinic