ARNICA: Arnica is a plant extract derived from a plant called Arnica Montana, which is a member of the daisy family of flowers. It is available in tablets and gels from most high street chemists as well as healthfood shops and is one of the most popular homeopathic remedies.
A variety of claims are made for the properties of arnica and quite a lot of doctors are sceptical about it. However, many of our patients tell us that it does help with resolving the pain and bruising after surgery, so we tend to recommend it on that basis.
IBULEVE GEL: This is a topical preparation made up of 10% ibuprofen. It can be rubbed onto areas of bruising or soreness after surgery. It works very well and can be bought over the counter without a prescription. Caution must be exercised when using it in tandem with Voltarol tablets which we commonly prescribe after surgery – the two can be used together but in carefully controlled doses.
BIO-OIL: This is an oil which contains a variety of compounds said to improve scarring and skin blemishes. It is quite expensive to buy but a lot of people say it speeds up healing of scars after surgery. The reasons it works are not clear but it may be due to the anti-oxidant properties of some of the constituent parts.
VITAMIN E OIL: Vitamin E oil is commonly used as a food supplement and sold in capsules. However, if the capsules are broken open and applied to scars and bruises they seem to clear up faster. Again the anti-oxidant effects are thought to be the active ingredient. We certainly recommend it to our patients.