What Are Treatment Options for Bruises?
Doctors have no special treatment for bruises other than the techniques described under home remedies: ice packs and later heat, over-the-counter medications for pain, and elevation of the bruised area, if possible.
- A suspected victim of domestic abuse may be referred to a law-enforcement official and/or a social worker.
- If a bruise does not heal after three to four weeks, or if it swells or becomes more painful, it may indicate a hematoma (blood collecting under the skin). If this occurs, a doctor can drain the hematoma.
- If you are on blood-thinning medication, blood tests might be ordered to evaluate if your medications need to be adjusted.
Is It Possible to Prevent Bruises?
- Wear protective gear while playing contact sports such as soccer, football, or hockey.
- Place furniture away from doorways and common walking paths within the home.
- Keep phone and electrical cords away from open areas where one may trip and fall.
- Be sure floors are kept dry and rugs are slip resistant.
- Keep floors free of clutter.
- Install a small night light or use a flashlight if one needs to walk to the bathroom during the night.
- If a doctor has prescribed anticoagulant medications (blood thinners), have regular monitoring and adjust medications as necessary.
- If you are prone to easy bruising, make sure you are getting enough vitamin C. It is best to get this nutrient from whole foods such as fruits and vegetables. Talk to your doctor for advice on incorporating these foods into your diet. If you choose to take supplements, consult your doctor for the dose that is right for you.
What Is the Prognosis of Bruises?
Bruises typically take about two weeks to disappear without complications. Repeated bruising of the leg in the elderly can lead to weakened, yellow-brown skin that tears easily when abraded.
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American Liver Foundation. "The Progression of Liver Disease." July 2, 2015. <http://www.liverfoundation.org/abouttheliver/info/progression/>.
American Osteopathic College of Dermatology. "Bruising Hands and Arms." (2016) <http://www.aocd.org/page/BruisingHandsAndArms>.
Ballas, M., and E.H. Kraut. "Bleeding and Bruising: A Diagnostic Work-up." American Family Physician Apr. 15, 2008. <http://www.aafp.org/afp/2008/0415/p1117.html>.
British Homeopathic Association. "Arnica montana." (2016) <http://www.britishhomeopathic.org/bha-charity/how-we-can-help/medicine-a-z/arnica-montana/>.
Hemophilia of Georgia. "Bruises." The Hemophilia, von Willebrand Disease & Platelet Disorders Handbook (2016) <http://www.hog.org/handbook/article/3/33/bruises>.
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. "What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Aplastic Anemia?" Aug. 22, 2012. <https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/aplastic/signs>.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 9/1/2016
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