The old adage of the profession of athletic training is “ice er’ down”. This comment is both simple and can seem to the patients/parents/coaches that you are not doing enough. However I am here to tell you that hypothermic treatment (ice) is EXTREMELY beneficial for just about every* injury we see for the basic principle of; slowing the metabolic response to injury.
When there is an insult to the body the immediate response is a metabolic reaction – in other terms the body uses chemical and mechanical pathways to repair/fix itself. Although the reason for the metabolic response is thought to be for “repair” the body response is usually not limited to what is needed – the more is better philosophy. I can bore you and make you click away real fast by giving you all the physiology of a metabolic response, so I won’t, but if you would like to read about it T.S. Walsh wrote a chapter in a book called “Principals of Surgical Care”.
Subsequent medical research has shown that attenuating the metabolic response has; decreased pain, shunted swelling, and improved outcomes, especially in a very narrow window after injury. The least invasive and easiest way to accomplish this is via hypothermia (see heat related illness). Cooling the body, even locally, can Continue reading