Treating Pain After Smartlipo

I had smartlipo on my arms and i didn't want to take vicodin for pain, can i take ibuprofen?

Doctor Answers 6

Ibuprofen alternative for SmartLipo

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Ibuprofen is an NSAID (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug) that can cause bleeding and bruising after surgery. An alternative NSAID is Celebrex (celecoxib) which does not significantly increase the risk of bleeding and has a more favorable side effect profile in regard to gastrointestinal irritation. It is a useful non-narcotic that can be used safely around the time of surgery. Many of my patients have been grateful that I often prescribe this before surgery, as they find they have less discomfort when they start it before a procedure.

It is unclear if an NSAID will decrease the skin tightening thought to be associated with laser-assisted liposuction as this effect has not yet been definitively quantified.

New York Oculoplastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 63 reviews

I generally request that all patients refrain from...

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I generally request that all patients refrain from Motrin (Ibuprofen and Advil are the same) for 2 weeks before and after surgery because of the increased risk of bleeding and bruising that these medications carry. 

No ibuprofen, try an alternative

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Although Smart Lipo tends to have less bruising due to the lasers ability to coagulate small vessels, there is always a potential for postoperative bruising and bleeding. Ibuprofen will worsen this situation so it is a definite NO. Most of my patients do well with Tylenol. Rarely they will request something stronger in which case I will prescribe either celebrex ( an excellent choice as a non-narcotic) or vicodin ( a mild narcotic pain reliever).

Smart Lipo gives a rapid recovery with minimal bruising so most patients will not need any pain medication beyond the first 24-48hrs

Edgar Franklin Fincher, MD, PhD
Beverly Hills Dermatologic Surgeon

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Celebrex better than Ibuprofen, Aspirin and other NSAIDS perioperatively

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I recommend taking Celebrex instead. It seems clear that the risk for bleedng and excessive bruising with Celebrex  is FAR LOWER than aspirin, ibuprofen or naprosin. I use Celebrex for all of my plastic surgical procedures (unless they have a sulfa allergy) and have found no problems with increased bruising or bleeding.

Pain Control after Liposuction

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For many patients, Tylenol is adequate for pain control after liposuction. Any NSAID can increase the risk of bleeding after surgery. Several small studies have suggested that Celebrex does not increase bleeding risk, but it is an NSAID and can increase bleeding risk. Prescription Tramadol or Ultram is not a narcotic, but has some narcotic action(mu receptor) and is an effective pain reliever that has fewer side effects and could be a good choice. I usually offer Hydrocodone, and most patients take very few.

Temp Patterson, MD
Burley Facial Plastic Surgeon

No Ibuprofen before or after Lipo

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Unfortunately you cannot take ibuprofen, as this could cause bruising and bleeding after surgery. We ask all patients to stay away from ibuprofen products, advil, motrin, etc at least one week before and after surgery. If you don’t feel comfortable taking vicodin, you may want to take some Extra Strength Tylenol.

Bruce E. Katz, MD
New York Dermatologic Surgeon
3.8 out of 5 stars 17 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.