What is DMSO?

What is DMSO?

| Spencer Beaudreault

So what is DMSO?

What is DMSO? Well for starters, Dimethyl Sulfoxide is a very versatile remedy for therapy. It's one of the few compounds out there that can be administered orally, topically, and through injection of both the vein and the muscle. There are thousands of studies that attest to its use having health benefits, proving that DMSO for pain is a truly significant therapeutic agent which holds promise in managing a wide range of debilitating conditions. After Hero Brands launched its DMSO Roll On, people kept asking, what is DMSO?

What is DMSO used for?


What is DMSO for joint pain


With its unrivaled ability to penetrate the skin, DMSO solution reduces pain and inflammation in osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and possibly even gout. That ability to penetrate the skin is key when combining other ingredients with it, like with our DMSO Roll On.


After numerous clinical trials, DMSO has proved that it can delay the development of atherosclerosis, which is the narrowing of the arteries. This is induced by poor dietary cholesterol as well as suppress in the accumulation of cholesterol in tissues, despite severely elevated levels.

Drug extravasation injury 

The escape of a drug into the extravascular space, aka the soft tissue, is known as Extravasation. This happens either by leakage from a vessel or by direct infiltration. When chemotherapy drugs leak into surrounding tissues (extravasate), expect severe damage. DMSO application has significantly improved extravasation tissue injury in affected patients, according to many studies. 


As stated before, DMSO penetrates the skin very effectively and acts as a carrier for most substances. It has been used to enhance penetration of alpha-interferon ointment, which is for the treatment of herpes. Typically when you apply a topical to your body, your body is only able to absorb a fraction of it. With DMSO thrown into the mix, you absorb much more of what is being applied.  

Interstitial cystitis 


This is a specific condition that causes bladder pressure, bladder pain and sometimes pelvic pain. Pain caused by interstitial cystitis can occasionally be very severe. Some causes of this condition include menstruation, sitting for a long time, stress, exercise and sexual activity. In order to treat this chronic inflammatory condition, the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has approved instilling DMSO for pain treatment in urinary bladder.

Reflex sympathetic dystrophy 

Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD) is an autonomic nervous system disorder that causes lasting and unbearable pain in the arms or legs. This disorder shows up after an injury, stroke or heart attack. It involves some type of malfunction with the sympathetic nervous system since it occurs most often after trauma. DMSO is more than capable of treating RSD because of its relationship with pain. 

Scleroderma (skin hardening)

Otherwise known as Systemic Fibrosis, Scleroderma is a chronic connective tissue disease. It's generally classified as one of the autoimmune rheumatic diseases. It involves the hardening and tightening of the skin and connective tissues. Overproduction and accumulation of collagen in body tissues is the main reason for causing scleroderma.

There are many different types that affect different parts of the body like blood vessels and internal organs. Research suggests applying DMSO increases blood supply to the skin when it's absorbed through the skin, thus helping treat the condition.   

Strains and sprains 


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When DMSO is applied topically, it provides rapid elimination of pain and increased mobility. The skin has oily membranes that it has no problem passing through. At that point it then reduces swelling and inflammation almost immediately.

Keloids, Scars, Burns, Bruises

A keloid is a growth of extra scar tissue that occurs where the skin has healed after an injury. Sometimes keloids can be very painful and itch. When applied daily to a raised scar like a keloid, it can flatten that scar after a few months.

Superficial burns reduce in pain and swelling when applied. There is a well established relationship between inflammation and burns. DMSO can also eliminate any bruising to most injuries.


how to use dmso


DMSO’s anti-inflammatory properties come primarily from its antioxidant action.

DMSO controls inflammation primarily by acting as an antioxidant and is also classified as a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory. 

Antioxidants are far more common in nutrition, like vitamin E or lycopene, but DMSO has a similar molecular structure that allows for common functionality. Most notably, DMSO binds with “free radicals,” which are oxygen compounds, the leftovers from normal biochemical reactions, that damage or destroy healthy cells. A byproduct of inflammation, these free radicals cause more swelling and inflammation as they accumulate. DMSO plays the part of a free radical scavenger, which slows down this process.

The most common way to use DMSO is by way of topical application. In certain circumstances, however, it may also be injected into a target area when an injury occurs in particularly dense tissue, such as a bowed tendon, or the site is difficult to reach. Veterinarians administer DMSO orally or intravenously in the early stages of laminitis to try to slow or halt the inflammatory cascade. 

DMSO draws fluid from tissues.

DMSO attracts water and is considered a hygroscopic compound. This property can reduce edema in swollen limbs. DMSO can also reduce swelling in the brain and spinal cord, which can be literally lifesaving in diseases like West Nile encephalitis. DMSO may be used to draw fluids out of the lungs in cases of acute pulmonary edema. 


Now, what is DMSO? And what is it used for? It's used for quite a bit of tough and troublesome conditions and ailments that are typically associated with inflammation, which is more often than not associated with pain. If you are someone who deals with any type of condition or ailment that forces you to deal with pain and inflammation, and you're looking for DMSO to help with treatment, try our DMSO Roll On. And if anyone asks "what is DMSO?" send them here!

Spencer Beaudreault

Spencer Beaudreault is the Founder of Hero Brands, a Business Development & Marketing Expert, and a lifelong advocate & user of cannabis, hemp, & plant-based alternatives.