Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Arthro-Pod EP 36 Bee Venom and Apitherapy

Hey there bug lovers! On our latest episode we are will dissect the contents of bee venom and discuss the possible medical uses of it. Bee venom is a chemical cocktail of pain inducing compounds but many people allow themselves to be stung for therapeutic reasons. Data suggests that there may be promising results but there is also reason for extreme caution before pursuing this course of action. 

Honey bees have many uses, is one of them medicinal? (Photo credit: Jim Kalisch; UNL Entomology)
A bee sting removed from the bee (Photo credit: Jim Kalisch; UNL Entomology)

Definitions to consider:

Apitherapy: The use of honey bee related products for medicinal purposes. Includes venom, honey, beeswax, etc.

Bee venom therapy (BVT):  "in which bee venom is used for medicinal purposes, is available worldwide, but is primarily utilized in Asia, Eastern Europe, and South America. The diverse therapeutic applications of BVT include various musculoskeletal conditions, such as arthritis and rheumatism, chronic recalcitrant neuralgia, arthralgia, and immune-related diseases. BVT is also used to desensitize patients to bee stings and thus inhibit allergic reactions"
A typical reaction a bee sting (Photo credit: Jim Kalisch; UNL Entomology)