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Case Study - Surgical Site Infection (SSI) Treated With DHAA Vitamin C Serum

Two infected surgical incisions in an ankle joint were treated with Dehydroascorbic Acid (DHAA) - Vitamin C serum topically resulting in the infection being quickly brought under control. This report covers the first 14 days of treatment, the case study is ongoing. Both wounds were classified as deep incision surgical site infections.


The subject presented with two surgical site infections (SSI) following surgery to flush infected fluid from the right ankle joint capsule due to septic arthritis. At presentation, around five weeks after surgery and five days after discharge from a 28 day stay in hospital, the subject was in considerable pain and unable to walk. She reported the infection was progressing rapidly with swelling, red blotches and an inflamed line progressing further up the leg towards the knee.

The infection had started before surgery and was treated with surgical flushing of the joint and continuous IV and oral antibiotics pre and post surgery for the duration of her hospital stay.

The surgery had required two incisions into the ankle, and both entered the same joint capsule from different angles. One incision was on the top of the ankle, the other from the outside edge. It was possible the two infected wounds were in fact one infection that passed completely through the foot via the joint cavity, redness and swelling were evident on the inside of the right ankle opposite the infected surgical wounds.

Two similar surgical procedures were performed on the right shoulder and right knee on the same day as the ankle surgery, both of these other wounds were closed and had healed without issue. At time of discharge from hospital the infection in the ankle appeared to be resolved, the relapse of the ankle infection (or this new infection?) started two days after discharge from hospital and the subject presented five days after discharge from hospital. The before photos show the infection immediately prior to the commencement of the DHAA vitamin C protocol.

Abridged Treatment Protocol*

At the time of presentation the foot and leg were bathed* in diluted Dehydroascorbic Acid (DHAA) Vitamin C serum before applying the serum directly to the wounds and red inflamed areas. The wounds were then bandaged.

DHAA is a small molecule form of vitamin C which penetrates skin 12 times better than normal vitamin C serums.

We also gave a bottle of liposomal vitamin C to be taken orally as the infection appeared to possibly be too deep for the topical DHAA serum to get to all of it.

For the first three days the subject bathed the whole foot and shin with diluted DHAA Vitamin C serum and dressed the wound twice daily with DHAA Vitamin C serum. She also took 5ml of oral liposomal Vitamin C twice daily, (about 1 gram of ascorbic acid in sunflower seed lecithin liposomes). After three days the bathing and dressing frequency was reduced to once per day.


The subject reports the rapidly advancing infection was halted in less than 24 hours, and was in obvious retreat by the next day with all red splotches and the red line from just above the ankle to the knee no longer visible. Swelling had reduced considerably, by the third day the first signs of healing were noticeable. She also reported immediate pain relief from bathing the foot and leg with DHAA Vitamin C Serum, deeper pain symptoms began diminishing after two days.

Although instructed to get to a hospital ASAP the subject ignored this advice after seeing the obvious signs of recovery the next day.

Treatment is ongoing at once per day.

No other treatments or antibiotics were used. Therefore the reversal of the infection was either spontaneous, or was solely due to the Vitamin C treatments described above.

Before and After SSI Photos

Before photos are around five weeks post surgery, it is clear that little wound healing has occurred in the five week period since surgery, the after photos are 14 days after the commencement of the Vitamin C Dehydroascorbic Acid treatments.

Front Top Ankle Surgical Site Infection

The wound shows a significant improvement over 14 days, associated swelling and erythema have largely resolved. Some redness and mild inflammation persists. Rolled wound edges have flattened. The top and bottom tails have knitted properly. A hard scab has formed, making it difficult to determine what is happening beneath the central wound.

Shin infection post surgery

Outside Ankle Surgical Site Infection

Most of the swelling has resolved after 14 days. Redness and white wound edge in the before photo has changed to pink, some wound closure has occurred. New flesh/skin growing in the top quarter of the wound has almost bridged the gap between the wound edges after 14 days treatment. The lower part of the wound still has a moist slough coating but this has not prevented the new skin/granulation from forming. The surrounding skin on this lesion is less red than the top incision.

Ankle infection post surgery

Before Photo Below:

On the side of the ankle opposite the largest infected incision swelling and redness can be seen on the ankle extending downward to just above the sole, backwards around to the Achilles tendon area, and forwards almost to the base of the toes. Intermittent superficial patches of erythema extend up the calf and shin to a point near the knee. Considerable swelling is evident on the top of the foot and side of the ankle.

Ankle opposite infection

Before Photo Below:

Unhealthy tissue extends 15 to 20mm beyond the wound border on the side of the larger wound. Discoloration spreads to near the sole, around to the Achilles tendon, and towards the toes. Superficial red blotches extend up towards the knee. Considerable swelling is evident on the top of the foot and both sides of the ankle.

Ankle opposite infection

At the time of writing it is four weeks after the last photos were taken and healing is complete, no new regressions or complications occurred. This page will be updated when final photos are available.

Case Study - Surgical Site Infection DHAA Vitamin C Treatment Protocol

This is the third similar infection case study we have treated with DHAA Vitamin C Serum, all have been treated successfully using the same protocol. The two other cases were both antibiotic resistant, one of which was a surgical site infection. Both reports are at the following link - Antibiotic resistant infections treated with DHAA Vitamin C Serum

DHAA Bathing Treatment

The objective is to saturate the skin with DHAA and vitamin C above and below the infection on arms and legs, without cross contaminating the infection site.

Mix 20 to 30 ml of DHAA Vitamin C Serum per 100 to 500ml of sterile water. We used "Pure Dew" as it is steam distilled, reverse osmosis filtered, and ozonised.

Always position wound uppermost and cover wound with a sterile tissue or sterile cotton cloth soaked in the solution. This is necessary to prevent cross contamination during this procedure.

Dip large paper towels into the solution and wrap around limb from well above the infection and any associated erythema or infection lines to the end of the limb including fingers, toes, palms, and soles then saturate with solution. As the solution drips off replace by trickling the remainder of the solution over the paper towels.

The evaporation of the water content has a marked cooling effect. While not employed in this case, if you make ice from the sterile water and add to the solution, the cooling effect will be enhanced. Vitamin C is an analgesic and improves circulation. The combination analgesic, cooling, anti-inflamatory and improved circulation due to vitamin C explains the relief reported in the three subjects.

This treatment typically takes around half an hour, and often visibly reduces the severity and extent of erythema and swelling after a single session.

DHAA Vitamin C Wound Dressing

After soaking the wound remove the pad covering the infection site and clean the wound with sterile pad to remove any debris and exude then apply three or four drops of DHAA - Vitamin C of serum directly to the wound. The soak will often loosen dead tissue and coagulated matter and makes removal easier.

A little more serum mixed with a few drops of water is spread over the surrounding inflamed area, a wrap around bandage is used to secure a non stick dressing pad in place.

Liposomal Vitamin C

The liposomal vitamin C used in this case study was 15% vitamin C (as ascorbic acid) suspended in sunflower lecithin. One teaspoon was taken morning and night.

PLEASE NOTE: The above is the protocol we used in our case studies, we are not suggesting it as an alternative treatment for sepsis or Cellulitus or any other ailment. Always consult with a medical professional first and if you have any of the following symptoms, and have an infection, go to the Accident and Emergency Department of your nearest hospital immediately.

Sepsis Symptoms
  • Fever and chills.
  • Very low body temperature.
  • Peeing less than normal.
  • Rapid pulse.
  • Rapid breathing.
  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Diarrhea.