Ibuprofen Intake Post Plastic Surgery Procedure?

I just had tumescent Smart Lipo done on my abdomen and a male breast reduction. My doctor said that I could take Ibuprofen after the surgery. After I did some research, this does not seem to be a good idea. I am 3 days post-op and I want to know, will the first 3 days of taking Ibuprofen affect my results? I just stopped taking it.

Doctor Answers (5)

No Big Deal

+4

Ibuprofen and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications have many advantages following surgery. They help to diminish the post-surgical inflammatory response that prolongs the pain and swelling after the trauma of surgery, and they are synergistic with (or may eliminate entirely) the use of narcotic pain medications.

Although they should be avoided before surgery, there is no reason why they cannot be used after surgery. By this point, there should be minimal risk of surgical bleeding, and any risk of increased bruising is purely hypothetical. I have used non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications in my post-op breast augmentation patients as well as liposuction patients, with no noticeable worsening or prolongation of bruising.

I find it advantageous to wean patients off narcotic pain medications as quickly as possible, to avoid dependence issues as well as constipation. There may be a slightly higher risk of gastric irritation with the non-steroidal anti-inflammatories, but this is more than balanced by the positive effects.


Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon

NSAIDS should be avoided after plastic surgery procedures

+2

NSAIDS should be avoided. Ibuprofen is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug that should not be used 1 week prior to and 1 week after surgery of this type. Ibuprofen is also sold as Advil, Motrin, and other trade names. This class of drug should be avoided in this case as it can affect the platelet function in your blood and affect the ability of the blood to clot.

Out of an abundance of caution many doctors recommend to their patients in your situation to avoid NSAIDs and to take Tylenol instead. With Tylenol it is very important to follow the directions on the medication to avoid taking too large a dose of acetaminophen. Many prescribed pain medications also contain acetaminophen which if taken together with Tylenol can cause toxic levels which may affect your liver. Please consult your physician if you have any questions.

Robert Vitolo, MD
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Ibuprofen after surgery

+2

Ibuprofen and antiinflammatory medications can be taken after almost every kind of surgery. They pose no risk in terms of postoperative morbidity in terms of excessive bleeding. They are also beneficial in terms of their antiinflammatory response.

When it comes to vein surgery (varicose veins), I also allow my patients to take aspirin if they have a need to do so.

I would follow your doctor's recommendations - the physician that did your surgery - as he/she has a protocol for how he practices and what is best for his/her patients.

I wouldn't worry about the short term consequences of these medications. Real bleeding usually has a surgical cause and is not from medications - although it is usually blamed on medications, vitamins, homeopathic drugs that patients take without informing their surgeons.

Hratch Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Buffalo General Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

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You are right! No ibuprofen for at least 7 days after the procedure

+2

Ibuprofen, as well as aspirin, aleve and other variants (advil, motrin, etc) are not supposed to be taken within 7 days before and 7 days after a procedure. For this reason, I recommend only tylenol extra strength to my patients who are doing this procedure.

The reason for this is that it affects clotting and could lead to quite a bit more bruising and even complications. This is not recommended after a procedure such as this.

It's a good thing you checked first before taking it!

Joel Schlessinger, MD
Omaha Dermatologist
4.5 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Ibuprofen and other NSAIDS after surgery

+1
Although there are theoretical reasons not to take non steroidal anti inflammatory medications after surgery secondary to anti platelet effects, with more than 25 years of practical experience treating patients, the use of Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin etc) and Naproxen (Aleve) is usually extremely helpful with minimal risk to an increase in clinical bleeding.  The reduction in pain and inflammation as well as the reduction in the need for narcotics is significant and i endorse the use of these medications after surgery.
Samuel N. Pearl, M.D.

Samuel N. Pearl, MD
San Jose Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.