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Old 04-08-2009, 06:32 PM   #1
Brent Mattis
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NSAIDS: Do they promote healing or mask injury?

The "standard" RX for most overuse injuries, seems to be rest, ice, and ibuprofen. Indeed the three are really good for making the pain go away. A long time ago I asked a question on a fitness forum about ibuprofen and someone referred me to a paper that showed that ibuprofen taken following exercise reduced the muscle building effects of the exercise, so I would prefer to avoid NSAIDs if possible.

Right now my left shoulder has some pain from an overuse injury. I've lain off the exercises that exacerbated it. I've been icing it consistently (which has helped a lot), I've even tried massaging it.

This entire post has been a long winded build-up to ask the following question: Does taking ibuprofen to treat an injury speed up the healing process or just treat the pain. I'm under the impression that some doctors think that inflammation is part of the healing process.

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Old 04-08-2009, 07:01 PM   #2
Robert D Taylor Jr
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Re: NSAIDS: Do they promote healing or mask injury?

Vitamin M is a vital nutrient and can only be found in supplement form. Take it early and often. It is also an antidepressant and a cancer cure. Of course I learned this from 20 years of Navy Medicine YMMV
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Old 04-08-2009, 10:52 PM   #3
Steven Low
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Re: NSAIDS: Do they promote healing or mask injury?

Inflammation is a natural part of the healing process.

DOMS and even non-sore muscles from working out undergo an inflammatory response because of the microtears in the sarcomeres, sarcolemma and other muscle proteins.

As far as inhibiting muscle... probably some.

But like any damage swelling tends to inhibit healing processes as well. If there's SWELLING then yes anti-inflams are good. Chronic inflammation is very, very bad which is why fish oil is such highly recommended for DHA/EPA which help inhibit systemic inflammation.


So to get to the point... if you have an actual injury NSAIDS is probably helpful. NOT for the pain, but to help limit the inflammation which makes injuries take longer to heal. This is exactly what ice does to help stop swelling/inflammatory response. (But ice has the added benefit of helping to increase blood flow to the area after it's taken off as blood comes in to warm up the area).

I wouldn't choose having more muscle growth over having my injuries get better faster....... would you?
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