I'm having revision lower blepharoplasty next month. I had bruising for 6 weeks after the first surgery. Do you recommend Bromelain and/or Arnica before surgery as well as after? My Dr. seemed somewhat indifferent to there use. If I do take these herbs, how much and when should I start taking it? I really don't want to be in hiding for another six weeks!
Bromelain And/or Arnica Before Surgery?
Doctor Answers 19
Reduce Swelling after Eyelid Surgery
For eyelid surgery, 4 main treatments exist for minimizing bruising, but unfortunately no "silver bullet" prevents completely. The first is starting Bromelain & Arnica prior to surgery. (A few studies in the medical literature show improvement but admittedly others show no difference). The second is largely out of your control and involves surgical technique. The third treatment is 48 hours of post-operative icing. Ice remains one of the most powerful anti-inflammatory agents, and I advise a maximum of 30 minutes every hour. After that period, transitioning to warm packs also helps. The fourth treatment for facial bruising that is remarkably effective is a Pulse-Dye laser. It will not erase the bruise but it can fade it significantly and speed the rate at which it disappears.
Best of luck in your recovery.
Arnica for Blepharoplasty
Arnica pills when taken starting the day before surgery and after surgery until any possible bruises are gone will reduce bruising and make them go away faster if you get any. Arnica cream afterwards helps as well if needed. Also avoid aspirin and ibuprofen for 10 days prior to surgery.
Arnica Before Blepharoplasty
I routinely recommend Arnica before and after surgery. This can be purchased at most pharmacies, over the counter. There are instructions with the medication of when it should be taken and should be started the evening before surgery. So, don't look at the package the morning of surgery because it may already be too late. Remember that these medications are herbal and not FDA approved. So, the studies demonstrating effectiveness are not great. I have attached a link to a patient who is one week out from a lower blepharoplasty (and facelift/browlift, lip augmentation) that I consider a normal, expected amount of bruising after having taken Arnica.
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Arnica for surgery
Bromelain is a botanical extract with natural anti-inflammatory and other beneficial properties. It can help decrease inflammation, swelling and pain that often accompany a surgical procedure.
Arnica Montana has been touted as causing decreased bruising, swelling and pain associated with surgery or soft tissue injury. with our homeopathic Arnica Montana.
For a thorough explanation of the beneficial effects of Bromelain, see the below link to an article I wrote on the subject
The optimal dosage is not known. I would recommend purchasing it from a company that specializes in pre-surgical medicines such as Vitamedica. You can contact my office if you are not able to find it elsewhere.
Arnica After Surgery
Eyelid revision: arnica for bruising
I routinely have my patients use Bromelain and arnica and arnica gel before and after surgery
Bromelain and Arnica for Surgery
Herbal supplements for bruising
Medication to prevent bruising
Bruising is expected after eyelid surgery and it usually resolves after 7 to 10 days. Persistent bruising and discoloration of the soft tissues can occur. There is really no magic cure as this will ultimately resolve on its own. Occasionally alternating warm and cool compresses can help as well as on over the counter herbal product, Bromelean. The usual antibruising dose is 500 mg twice a day between meals. Arnica can be used prior to surgery, a good product to try from Alpinepharm.com
In my experience, Arnica pills are helpful for minimizing post-operative bruising.
In my practice, I routinely give all of my surgical patients Boiron, arnica pills which are begun 48 hours before surgery, and are continued for 7-10 days. This herb appears to lighten dark bruising, especially after rhinoplasty or blepharoplasty, and makes it easier to use concealer and resume normal social activities.
This is anecdotal, but in my opinion, Boiron arnica montana pills appear to be effective in minimizing post-operative bruising. I have never offered bromelain to my patients.
Hope this is helpful for you.