Fifty-nine patients with wounds and ulcers most of which (80 per cent) had failed to heal with conventional treatment were treated with unprocessed honey. Fifty-eight cases showed remarkable improvement following topical application of honey. One case, later diagnosed as Buruli ulcer, failed to respond. Wounds that were sterile at the outset, remained sterile until healed, while infected wounds and ulcer became sterile within 1 week of topical application of honey. Honey debrided wounds rapidly, replacing sloughs with granulation tissue. It also promoted rapid epithelialization, and absorption of oedema from around the ulcer margins.