DMSO, or dimethyl sulfoxide, is a by-product of paper making. It originates from a substance found in wood. DMSO has been used as a commercial solvent because the mid-1800s. From about the mid-20th century, scientists have actually explored its usage as an anti-inflammatory representative. The FDA has actually approved DMSO as a prescription medication for treating symptoms of unpleasant bladder syndrome. It’s likewise utilized under medical guidance to deal with a number of other conditions, including shingles.

DMSO is quickly taken in by the skin. It’s often utilized to increase the body’s absorption of other medications. DMSO is readily available without a prescription frequently in gel or cream kind. It can be bought in health food shops, by mail order, and on the Internet. While it can often be found as an oral supplement, its safety is uncertain. DMSO is mostly utilized by using it to the skin. (1 )


DMSO is a prescription medicine and dietary supplement. It can be taken by mouth, applied to the skin (utilized topically), or injected into the veins (used intravenously or by IV).

DMSO is taken by mouth, utilized topically, or provided intravenously for the management of amyloidosis and associated symptoms. Amyloidosis is a condition in which certain proteins are deposited abnormally in organs and tissues.

DMSO is used topically to decrease discomfort and speed the recovery of wounds, burns, and muscle and skeletal injuries. DMSO is likewise used topically to deal with painful conditions such as headache, inflammation, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and extreme facial discomfort called tic douloureux. It is utilized topically for eye conditions including cataracts, glaucoma, and problems with the retina; for foot conditions consisting of bunions, calluses, and fungus on toenails; and for skin problem including keloid scars and scleroderma. It is sometimes used topically to treat skin and tissue damage caused by chemotherapy when it leakages from the IV that is utilized to deliver it. DMSO is utilized either alone or in combination with a drug called idoxuridine to treat discomfort related to shingles (herpes zoster infection).

Intravenously, DMSO is utilized to lower abnormally hypertension in the brain. It is likewise provided intravenously to treat bladder infections (interstitial cystitis) and chronic inflammatory bladder disease. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has actually authorized particular DMSO items for placement inside the bladder to deal with signs of persistent inflammatory bladder illness. DMSO is often positioned inside bile ducts with other medications to deal with bile duct stones. In manufacturing, DMSO is utilized as a commercial solvent for herbicides, fungicides, antibiotics, and plant hormones. (2 ).

Does DMSO truly work?

Let’s take a more detailed look at DMSO as picture you would like to know if it works and how it works. And believe me, I want to get you through this rapidly so you can just get on with using it.

Maybe it’s my northern blood due to the fact that I do not do BS. When it pertains to natural health procedures I have one basic question … does it work? (Like, does it actually help individuals get well without doing any damage)!

And I need to state, I’ve used DMSO on myself and in my practice– and the response is an amazing YES.

In a scientific setting– (which likewise includes individuals on my detox retreats and my nutrition diploma trainees) … the outcomes have varied from nothing less than valuable to nothing short of incredible.

As part of a nutritional healing wellness program, I have actually seen fantastic outcomes with my own eyes: people who concerned us IN a wheelchair, literally walking out the door by the end of just one week; disabling tinnitus gone in 1 week; pain medications drastically minimized; mobility significantly improved… rapid injury healing; speedy tissue repair (e.g. frozen shoulders); removal of headaches; minimized arthritic pain; cured pain in the back; lowered oedema; improved memory.

Even Family pets

I have actually even used DMSO as part of my dog’s rehabilitation protocol for a shoulder injury. And by the way, her physio likewise deals with horses and reports knowing lots of vets who utilize DMSO routinely in the treatment of equine muscle or joint injury. (3 ).

What is DMSO utilized for?

DMSO is an extremely versatile treatment. For beginners, it’s one of the few substances that can be administered orally, topically, and through injection of both the vein and the muscle. The results of thousands of research studies vouching for its health-promoting properties strongly support the view that DMSO is a truly significant restorative anti-inflammatory and that holds guarantee in managing a large range of incapacitating conditions:.

Arthritis – With its capability to penetrate tissues, DMSO shows worth in decreasing pain and inflammation in osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and perhaps even gout.

Atherosclerosis – In lab tests, DMSO has shown its ability to delay the advancement of atherosclerosis (narrowing of the arteries) induced by dietary cholesterol, in addition to suppress the build-up of cholesterol in tissues, despite seriously raised levels.

Drug extravasation injury – Extravasation refers to the escape of a drug into the extravascular area (soft tissue), either by leakage from a vessel or by direct seepage. When chemotherapy drugs leakage into surrounding tissues (extravasate), the impacts can be seriously harmful. Lots of research studies have revealed that DMSO application has actually significantly enhanced extravasation tissue injury in afflicted patients.

Herpes – DMSO has actually been used to improve penetration of alpha-interferon lotion in the treatment of herpes.

Interstitial cystitis – Instilling DMSO in the urinary bladder is an FDA-approved pain-relieving treatment for this persistent inflammatory condition.

Reflex considerate dystrophy – DMSO helps ease the discomfort of this condition, a free nerve system disorder characterized mainly by frustrating discomfort in the extremities.

Scleroderma (hardening of the skin) – In fundamental work done at the Cleveland Center, topical DMSO was discovered to have an anti-inflammatory impact while increasing blood supply to the skin.

Stress and sprains – DMSO offers rapid removal of pain and increased movement when used topically. It travels through the skin’s oily membranes and reduces swelling and inflammation almost immediately.

Keloids, Scars, Burns, Bruises – A concentration of 50 to 80% put on two or 3 times a day will flatten a raised scar after a number of months. It is of considerable worth in superficial burns and when used quickly to an injury, it can get rid of any bruising. (4 ).

What evidence is there that DMSO works?

There is extremely little clinically valid research study to show that DMSO is helpful for any medical condition including its authorized medical usages. The United States Fda performed screening on DMSO in the early 1960’s and stopped after discovering that the use of this product was triggering major eye problems in their test animals. Ever since well-controlled medical trials have not been carried out on this product to determine if there are potential side effects from its long term use or if there are possibly damaging drug interactions. A double blind placebo controlled research study conducted in Germany and released in 1995, did reveal that 25% DMSO gel applied topically to arthritic joints did lower pain during both rest and activity. However, it should be carefully noted that these results might not be reproduced in the United States. (5 ).


  • An economical substance called dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) holds excellent promise in handling a diverse array of health conditions, yet has mostly been overlooked by the medical community.
  • Originally found as a byproduct of paper production, DMSO has actually shown exceptional anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and antioxidant homes.
  • DMSO is presently approved for only one scientific sign: interstitial cystitis, an uncomfortable persistent inflammatory condition of the urinary bladder.
  • One of DMSO’s most appealing functions is treating severe closed head trauma. Research by Dr. Stanley Jacob shows that DMSO alleviates brain swelling and brings back blood flow and oxygenation following such injuries.
  • Studies suggest even more applications for DMSO in fighting health problems such as arthritis, fibromyalgia, Alzheimer’s illness, and ulcerative colitis.
  • DMSO’s advantages are mainly unidentified and unavailable to the US public, mostly due to the fact that it is an affordable compound that is ineligible for patenting by pharmaceutical companies. (6 )

Complementary and Natural Medicine

How to Take It


Do not offer sulfur to a child.


There is no recommended dietary allowance for sulfur. The majority of people get all they require from their diet plan. (7 ).

Dimethyl sulfoxide Adverse effects

Side effects requiring instant medical attention

Together with its necessary effects, dimethyl sulfoxide may trigger some undesirable results. Although not all of these side effects may happen, if they do occur they might need medical attention.

Check with your physician right away if any of the following negative effects take place while taking dimethyl sulfoxide:.

  • Nasal congestion
  • shortness of breath or struggling breathing
  • skin rash, hives, or itching
  • swelling of face

Some patients might have some pain during the time this medicine is being put into the bladder. However, the pain usually becomes less each time the medication is used.

Dimethyl sulfoxide might cause you to have a garlic-like taste within a few minutes after the medicine is taken into the bladder. This effect may last for several hours. It may also cause your breath and skin to have a garlic-like odor, which may last as much as 72 hours.

Handling adverse effects (general details)

For Healthcare Professionals.

Applies to dimethyl sulfoxide: compounding liquid, irrigation option, topical solution.


Frequency not reported: Odor on skin (might stay for 72 hours).


Frequency not reported: Garlic-like taste (a couple of minutes after instillation), odor on breath (might stay for 72 hours).


Frequency not reported: Chemical cystitis.


Frequency not reported: Extreme discomfort on administration.

More about dimethyl sulfoxide

  • During Pregnancy
  • Dosage Details
  • Drug Interactions
  • En Español
  • Drug class: various genitourinary tract agents

Client resources

  • Drug Information
  • Dimethyl sulfoxide Intravesical (Advanced Reading)

Other brand names

  • Cryoserv, Rimso-50

Related treatment guides

  • Bladder Infection
  • Interstitial Cystitis (8 )

What are the adverse effects of Dimethyl Sulfoxide (Rimso-50)?

Get emergency medical aid if you have signs of an allergy: hives; hard breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Inform your caretakers if you feel extreme discomfort or inflammation when the medicine is placed, or while you are holding it in your bladder. This might become less visible in time with repeat treatments.

You may see a garlic- or onion-like taste in your mouth while you are getting dimethyl sulfoxide. This effect might last for a number of hours after you receive the medicine, and you may likewise sense these odors on your breath or skin. This is a typical negative effects of dimethyl sulfoxide and is not trigger for issue.

This is not a total list of negative effects and others might occur. Call your medical professional for medical guidance about negative effects. You might report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What is the most crucial information I should know about Dimethyl Sulfoxide (Rimso-50)?

You must not be treated with dimethyl sulfoxide if you dislike it.

  • Inform your physician if you have ever had:
  • bladder or kidney cancer; or
  • vision issues.
  • It is not known whether this medication will harm an unborn infant. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to conceive.
  • It might not be safe to breast-feed while using this medicine. Ask your doctor about any threat. (9 )


DMSO is metabolized in human beings by oxidation to dimethyl sulfone, DMSO2 or by decrease to dimethyl sulfide, DMS. DMSO and DMSO2 are excreted in the urine and feces. DMS is gotten rid of through the breath and skin with a characteristic “garlic” or “oyster-like” odor. Human excretion of orally administered DMSO is total within 120 hours, with urinary excretion being the main path. The rate of renal clearance has been revealed to be comparable for chronic and singly administered dosages regardless of dosage concentration. No residual build-up of DMSO has actually been reported in human beings or lower animals who have gotten DMSO treatment for lengthy amount of times, regardless of route of dosage administration.


The metabolites of DMSO are DMSO2, which naturally happens at low levels in human urine (PDR, 1994) 8, and DMS, which naturally takes place in plants, the atmosphere, and lakes and oceans (Pearson et al., 1981) 9. Both of these metabolites are easily excreted from the body. Based upon their extensive natural incident and prepared degradation and/or excretion, the production of these metabolites from the proposed use of DMSO on food producing plants is not expected to pose any toxicological concern.


Impacts on Plants. DMSO by itself and DMSO with antibiotics, minerals, nutrients, pesticides and other materials have been sprayed on, injected into, painted on, and fed to a variety of plants. It has a low order of phytotoxicity in these applications.

Results on Fish. Wilford11investigated the toxicity of DMSO in water to 9 types of fish. At 96 hours, the LC-50 was 32,000 to 43,000 ppm DMSO (3 – 4%). This is far less toxic than acetone (fingernail polish eliminator) and other commonly used solvents.

Results on Sewage Plants. DMSO is biodegradable in biological systems. It is converted in part to methyl sulfone and to dimethyl sulfide. The sulfone is steady and inert and deteriorated only slowly by bacteria or physical factors. At high concentrations, some DMS might leave, producing its particular smell.


The incident of DMSO and its metabolites, dimethyl sulfide and methyl sulfone (DMSO2), have actually been widely reported in a variety of foods. Pearson9 and coworkers reported finding 0.07 to 16 ppm DMSO, along with DMSO2, in 14 fruits, vegetables or drinks. This natural occurrence guarantees that the body can dispose of DMSO by reputable metabolic processes. Naturally-occurring DMSO has actually been recognized in alfalfa, asparagus, barley, beans, beets, cabbage, corn, cucumbers, oats, onions, Swiss chard, tomatoes, apples, raspberries, spearmint, beer, milk, coffee and tea. DMSO concentrations in fresh fruits, veggies and grains varied from undetected (<< 0.05 parts per million) to 1.8 ppm.


DMSO is not mutagenic to Salmonella, Drosophila, and fish cell cultures. Since DMSO is so non-reactive as a mutagen, it is extensively used as a solvent in mutagenicity testing. Although DMSO is bacteriostatic or bactericidal at concentrations of 5-50%, there is no evidence that DMSO causes chromosomal aberrations at levels that are not straight harmful to cells. Bone marrow smears from primates (rhesus monkeys) that got oral or topical doses of DMSO for 18 months showed no DMSO results (Vogin et al., 1970) 12. An in vivo cytogenetics research study of DMSO administered by intraperitoneal injection to male rats discovered a considerable increase in aberrant femoral bone marrow cells when compared to controls (Kapp and Eventoff, 1980) 13. Nevertheless, evidence from the Salmonella studies and other toxicology information, especially the teratology information, recommends that the boost in aberrant femoral cells likely resulted from direct toxicity of DMSO injected into an animal instead of a traditional “mutagenic” action.

According to Brayton (1986 ), there are no documented negative genetic effects reported as a result of medicinal DMSO usages (including quasi-medicinal usages for treatment of arthritis or sprains and pressures). Additionally, no negative genetic effects have been reported from occupational exposure to DMSO in over 40 years of commercial usage (Brayton, 1986). There is no proof that DMSO causes chromosomal aberrations at levels that are not directly poisonous to cells.


A mouse teratology NOEL of 12g/kg/day has actually been developed based upon research with a 50% DMSO option administered orally. Additional teratogenicity studies of orally administered DMSO to pregnant mice, rats, rabbits and guinea pigs have demonstrated that DMSO is not a teratogen in mammals other than at high levels that cause obvious maternal toxicity and are coincident with the maximum endured dose. The information suggest that DMSO is not teratogenic at low levels regardless of the route of administration. Lastly, the teratogenic capacity of DMSO depends on the route of administration, the dosage level and gestation phase at exposure.

The one research study (Robens, 1968) that did show proof of teratogenic results (in hamsters, among three animal types checked) from oral administration of DMSO is inappropriate to use for a teratologic examination of DMSO for the following reasons:.

DMSO was not the substance of interest however was utilized only as a solvent control at 2 really high dosage levels which prevented establishing a NOEL.

Among the DMSO levels tested resulted in maternal death and was plainly beyond the optimum endured dosage (MTD).

DMSO is not considered to be straight embryotoxic and has actually been revealed to be a successful cryoprotectant for mammalian semen and embryos (Brayton, 1986).

In summary, the proof of the above teratology information suggests that:

DMSO is not a teratogen to mammals when administered through oral and dermal routes at dosage levels that do not produce obvious maternal toxicity.

DMSO is not a teratogen at low dose levels regardless of the path of administration.

The teratogenic potential of DMSO depends on route of administration, the dose level and the gestational time of exposure.


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