When to Start Taking Arnica Montana and Bromelain? Before or After Surgery?

I'm Having a lower body lift in 3 days and i'm not sure when to start taking this medication?

Doctor Answers 8

Vitamins & Supplements Can Interact with Medications At Time of Anesthesia

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Thank you for your question.  Arnica and Bromelain is often recommended to help reduce bruising after cosmetic procedures such as facelifts and liposuction.  The scientific studies suggest they may help but are not strongly convincing due to flaws in study design that are difficult to overcome.  They may or may not be helpful and are probably not harmful.  There are some risks associated with taking vitamins and nutritional supplements before surgery such as interactions with narcotics and anesthetic medicines.  In your case Arnica and Bromelain are unlikely to significantly change your recovery from a body lift, but could contribute to bleeding in a procedure that has some risk.  Bruising can also be covered with clothing in comparison to the face where it cannot without camouflage makeup. My recommendation would be to start it after surgery to reduce any risk of interactions or effect on bleeding.  Be safe & Best Wishes! 

Begin Arnica and Bromelain Before Surgery

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I would suggest that you begin your Arnica Montana and Bromelain before your body lift.  These herbal medications help to minimize swelling and bruising.  I recommend a product called Arnika Forte.  It combines both Arnica Montana and Bromelain in a single capsule.  Patients begin the day before surgery and continue for 6 days after surgery.  Good luck with your upcoming procedure!

Mark Schwartz, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon

Arnica and Bromelain Supplements

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I suggest to my patients beginning supplements such as  bromelain or arnica a week or two before their procedure(s). However, its best to consult with your board-certified Plastic Surgeon beforehand. She or he will make suggestions according to your procedure and medical records in addition to discussing your pre-op preparations. Also, such may be provided for you with your pre-op material and prescriptions in time for your recovery period. You will learn more about preparing at your pre-op appointment. 

When to start taking Arnica?

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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!

Bromelain And Arnica Montana After Cosmetic Surgery

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It's not unusual for patients to be worried about recovery times following cosmetic surgery. Delayed recovery is almost always related to prolonged swelling and bruising. For this reason, every effort should be make to minimize the potential for these complications.

Although there's no strong scientific data available, many surgeons recommend Bromelain and Arnica Montana to minimize bruising in the post-operative period. It's extremely important to discuss the use of this supplement with your surgeon prior to surgery. Your surgeon should be able to answer your questions and give you appropriate direction.

When to start taking Arnica Montana and bromelain?

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Hi Dana, I would not take Arnica Montana or Bromaline at all. Arnica Montana and Bromaline may slightly decrease the bruising and they may slightly decrease the swelling. However, they are known to have significant side effects. Please be sure you know the side effects before you start taking this medication these medications. I do not use Arnica or Bromaline at all in my practice. I especially do not use these medications for lower body lifts. The complication rate and side effects are just too high. Congratulations on your weight loss. Good luck with your surgery.


Dr. Katzen

Bromelain and arnica

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I am not a big fan of arnica or bromelain.  The research in the journals do not support its use much. 

Supplements for surgery

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Omega 3 fats (e.g. fish oil, EFA, flax seed oil, Krill oil), NSAID's (aspirin, ibuprofen, naprosyn), Vitamin E, "blood thinners" and a whole host of supplements and medicines can cause excessive bleeding and bruising and therefore increase your recovery time. When in doubt stay away from supplements unless they are designed for surgery. I offer to my patients specific supplements that speed healing, reduce swelling, bruising and in some cases minimize discomfort (for example Bromelain, Arnica Montanum, and Vitamins designed for surgery.

Bottom Line: Certain vitamins and minerals can speed healing others can cause problems and slow the process down or cause complications. If healing is going well I usually let my patients go back to their usual regimen of supplements

Check with your doctor as only your doctor would have access to your medical history and what would be best for you. We typically allow our patients to continue their supplements 10 days post op if their recovery is going well.

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.