Bruising After Surgery

Bruising After SurgeryPatients often ask how much bruising to expect after surgery. Unfortunately, there is no way to know how much one will bruise because everyone heals differently. During the healing process, bruises go through several different color changes, which means that the body is breaking down the red blood cells that have collected under the skin.

The different colors show what stage the bruise is in the healing process. First, the bruise is reddish, followed by a blue-purple, and finally a yellow-green color.

There are a few tricks to help minimize bruising. Two weeks prior to surgery, it is important to stop taking any supplements, aspirin or ibuprofen products. It is also helpful to take arnica a few days before surgery. Consumption of supplements such as fish oil, seafood, and even herbal products should be ceased and avoided as well. For the first 72 hours after surgery, icing is recommended. Following the ice, warm compresses are best.