Does Arnica Really Work for the Bruising After Tumescent Liposuction?

I've seen reviews online and heard from a few people that Arnica can have a significant effect on bruising after liposuction. My inner thighs are very purple, but the other areas are hardly bruised. Can Arnica really help? If so, which delivery method? My PS suggested that if I try it, I use the oral Arnica. Are creams or gels effective?

Doctor Answers 4

Arnica May or May Not Help, Probably Not Harmful

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Arnica Montana is often recommended as a natural remedy to resolve bruising after surgey.  Other natural remedies include bromelain which is found in pineapple juice, vitamin c to help with healing and other anti-inflammatory products.  Recovery and bruising after surgery is very difficult to study because there are so many other variables that affect the outcome (technology used, amount of surgery, amount of trauma, bruising tendency, etc.).  Even if done by the same surgeon, the amount of bruising can differ from one side to the next.  This is a vexing area of study with little solid evidence one way or the other.  You can try these remedies either orally or topically. If the topical Arnica irritates the skin, stop using it.  They are generally safe if used as directed. Good luck with your recovery!

Does Arnica Really Work for the Bruising After Tumescent Liposuction?

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    I am not sure how helpful this is, but I do not typically have a lot of bruising after liposuction.  The bruising that is present improves and disappears over the first one to weeks.  Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA

Does Arnica really work for the bruising after tumescent liposuction?

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Hello! Thank you for your question! The recommendations for the use of these homeopathic medications are surgeon preference. I typically suggest use Arnica to decrease swelling and bruising. It is an herbal medication that is propagated from the seeds of an herb. I, as well as my patients, have seen some benefit with the treatment in the postoperative period. Although there is little vidence to its effectiveness, I believe there robe some benefit, but no harm. I recommend 4-5 tablets under the tongue 4x/day for 3-5 days prior and 5-7 days after the procedure. Hope that this helps! Best wishes!

Lewis Albert Andres, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Bruising after Liposuction

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Before liposuction, bruising is a top concern. After liposuction, the areas are covered by a compression garment, and bruising is not a common concern. I have never seen bruising present at a one month follow up visit.

Rather than pursue various remedies, I recommend patients pay more attention to prevention. One needs to avoid aspirin  for eight days before surgery. Also avoid ibuprofen, Aleve, and anything else for aches and pains except Tylenol (acetaminophen) which is okay. Celebrex which is Rx is also a bruise-free pain medication. Some supplements also promote bruising so one's regular medications, supplements and vitamins should all be reviewed.

T. Wayne Day, MD
Nashville Dermatologic Surgeon

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.