Vitamin C for the treatment of recurrent furunculosis in patients with imparied neutrophil functions

J Infect Dis. 1996 Jun;173(6):1502-5. doi: 10.1093/infdis/173.6.1502.


The effect of vitamin C treatment on 23 patients with a history of recurrent furunculosis with negative nasal cultures was studied. Neutrophil functions (chemotaxis, phagocytosis, or superoxide generation) of 12 patients were significantly lower than those of the matched controls. In this group, treatment with vitamin C (1 g/day) caused a dramatic clinical response as well as a significant improvement of neutrophil functions, reaching values similar to those of the controls. Two patients remained vitamin C-dependent. In the patients with normal neutrophil functions, vitamin C treatment neither affected neutrophil activity nor caused a clinical response. Therefore, patients suffering from recurrent furunculosis with defective neutrophil functions may be treated successfully with vitamin C, contributing to both neutrophil function recovery and a dramatic clinical response.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Ascorbic Acid / blood
  • Ascorbic Acid / therapeutic use*
  • Chemotaxis, Leukocyte
  • Furunculosis / drug therapy*
  • Furunculosis / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Matched-Pair Analysis
  • Middle Aged
  • Neutrophils / cytology
  • Neutrophils / immunology*
  • Neutrophils / metabolism
  • Phagocytosis
  • Recurrence
  • Superoxides / metabolism


  • Superoxides
  • Ascorbic Acid