8 doctors weighed in:

Why did my 3 week old sprained ankle still swell when I used a cold compress on it?

8 doctors weighed in
Dr. James DeMeo
Orthopedic Surgery - Foot & Ankle
4 doctors agree

In brief: Sprain

Swelling after an injury is very common and can last for several weeks.
You should still use ice if you are having swelling. I you are having pain a follow up visit to your doctor is needed.

In brief: Sprain

Swelling after an injury is very common and can last for several weeks.
You should still use ice if you are having swelling. I you are having pain a follow up visit to your doctor is needed.
Dr. James DeMeo
Dr. James DeMeo
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3 doctors agree

In brief: Warm compress

After the first 48 hours you should use warm compresses to get the circulation moving.

In brief: Warm compress

After the first 48 hours you should use warm compresses to get the circulation moving.
Dr. Steven Frydman
Dr. Steven Frydman
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Dr. James Ferguson
Pediatrics

In brief: Chemicals/pressure

With a sprain your body releases local chemicals that dilate blood vessels.
As long as that ankle is positioned below your heart, there is fluid pressure that pushes it out of the dilated vessels. Chilling diminishes the chemical effect but any residual will still produce swelling. After a day or 2 we suggest heat to improve blood flow & remove accumulated extra fluid.

In brief: Chemicals/pressure

With a sprain your body releases local chemicals that dilate blood vessels.
As long as that ankle is positioned below your heart, there is fluid pressure that pushes it out of the dilated vessels. Chilling diminishes the chemical effect but any residual will still produce swelling. After a day or 2 we suggest heat to improve blood flow & remove accumulated extra fluid.
Dr. James Ferguson
Dr. James Ferguson
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