Orthopedic Health

Hot Fomentation vs Icing

Written by
Dr. Vikram S Bharadwaj
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.

Published on Dec 19, 2018   -  1 min read

Abstract

Abstract

Fomentation is the application of hot or cold packs to the site of internal injury to ease body pains. They are most effective when used in back pain, knee pain, and eye irritation.

Hot Fomentation vs Icing

Icing

Icing should be done when you injure yourself during day-to-day activities like walking, running, etc. There will be swelling after 24 hours but icing should be done for under five minutes every one and a half hours, for the first five days. Some injuries may respond to icing alone and some others will respond to a mix of icing for two to three minutes followed by hot fomentation for the same amount of time. If the injury is too old/chronic, it is better to start with icing.

This can be done with ice cubes wrapped in a cloth or ice packs available commercially. Always use a crepe bandage if the injury is in the wrist or elbow, anklet if it is the ankle, post icing.

Hot Fomentation

Hot fomentation should be done when the injury/pain is over a large area like lower back or knee. Lower back ache responds to hot fomentation faster than icing. This has to be done with a rubber hot bag available commercially or else hot packs which can be kept in the oven for reheat. The commercially available electric bag will not provide enough heat to penetrate.

For knee and shoulder pain, as in osteoarthritis of the knee or frozen shoulder, hot water bag is only needed. Hot fomentation needs to be done only for 10 minutes if the patient is nondiabetic and seven minutes if the patient is diabetic. It should be lukewarm and not hot. Always apply a local pain relief ointment after fomentation. Always use a lumbosacral belt if the part is lower back, and a knee brace if it is an OA knee.

Last reviewed at:
19 Dec 2018  -  1 min read

RATING

15

Tags:

Related Questions & Answers


My joint pain is affecting my academics. Please suggest a permanent cure.

Query: Hello doctor, I have been experiencing joint pains in my waist, back, and neck for a year now. Whenever I visit a hospital, I am prescribed NSAID, which gives me only a temporary relief. I want this problem to get solved permanently because it has started affecting my academics. I need your ...  Read Full »


Dr. Ashaq Hussain Parrey
Rheumatologist

Answer: Hello, Welcome to icliniq.com. I went through your query. Your predominant complaint is pain along the axial skeleton. If it is associated with early morning stiffness of the back and if the pain increases with rest, then ankylosing spondylitis needs to be ruled out. If the above features are not pr...  Read Full »

How can knee pain be prevented?

Query: Hello doctor, There is dull knee pain while standing and walking for one month. What can be the cause of this?  Read Full »


Dr. Lokesh
Orthopaedician And Traumatologist

Answer: Hello, Welcome to icliniq.com. Knee pain is a common complaint that affects people of all ages. Knee pain may be the result of an injury or some other medical conditions including arthritis, patellar tendinitis, ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) injury, knee bursitis, torn meniscus, gout, and infe...  Read Full »

Had cervical polypectomy and experiencing back pain. Will it subside in time?

Query: Hi doctor, I had cervical polypectomy and was told to expect brown discharge. Now experiencing cramping, minor bleeding, vinegar smell, and severe back pain, to the point that I am dizzy and nauseous. A couple of days earlier had a bunch of discharge that looked like dark reddish and orangish skin....  Read Full »


Dr. Sameer Kumar
Family Physician, Obstetrician And Gynaecologist, Infertility Specialist

Answer: Hello, Welcome to icliniq.com. It is normal to experience reddish brown discharge for 4-5 days post cervical polypectomy, but it should not cause any back pain per se unless there has been a secondary infection or vaginitis or bacterial vaginosis which is quite likely with vinegar smell. Flagyl (Met...  Read Full »

Popular Articles Most Popular Articles

Do you have a question on Back Pain or Knee Pain?

Ask a Doctor Online

* guaranteed answer within 4 hours.
Enter Your Health Query
You can upload files and images in the next step.

Fee:  

 


Disclaimer: All health articles published on this website is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical diagnosis, advice or treatment by a trained physician. Seek the advice from your physician or other qualified health-care providers with questions you may have regarding your symptoms and medical condition for a complete medical diagnosis. Do not delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice because of something you have read on this website.