Black salve (a.k.a. bloodroot salve) is very controversial herbal ointment that was used in the 18th and 19th centuries to chemically burn off tumors from the top layers of skin. Today, there are anecdotal stories of people using it to naturally "draw out" cancer cells through the skin or ingesting a small amount to aid in healing internal cancers. However, there have never been any scientific studies or controlled clinical trials to prove these claims.
Proponents of black salve say the benefits include: (i) killing cancerous cells without damaging healthy ones, (ii) potential anticancer and antimicrobial capabilities, (iii) no scarring once the area is healed, (iv) may stimulate the growth of normal tissue, and (v) low price.
However, others warn of the risks, including: (i) skin burns, (ii) temporary open wounds, (iii) temporary skin blackening, scarring and discoloration, and (iv) poisonous when taken internally.
Below are some of the resources available (both for and against black salve) if you are interested in learning more.
As with any type of full wellness support, it is extremely important to fully research and form your own opinion on utilizing black salve in partnership with a qualified healthcare professional.
In Support Of...
There is very limited scientific research on black salve. Below are links to some of the studies that have been done to date.