Home The Book Dr Articles Products Message Boards Journal Articles Search Our Surveys Surgery ESWT Dr Messages Find Good Drs video

Why does icing make my foot swell?

Posted by Rhonda on 7/29/98 at 01:09 (001117)

I know that icing the foot is highly recommended to combat inflammation. When I rub an ice cube on my heel, even for a short time, the heel swells which in turn makes my heel hurt even more! This doesn't seem to happen if I use frozen peas or frozen gel packs. Does this happen to anyone else's foot? If so, do you know why?
Thanks for any information you can provide! Rhonda

Re: Why does icing make my foot swell?

Kathy on 7/29/98 at 07:24 (001123)

I use a gel ice pack. It hurts A LOT after about 20 minutes, but it feels MUCH better the next day if I ice the night before. I have never used direct ice on my heel. My PT advised against that because of the risk of freezing. Always wrap ice or ice pack in a towel.

Re: Why does icing make my foot swell?

Kathy on 7/29/98 at 08:51 (001125)

Just another 'hearsay' - I was told that when icing you should do a rotation of 10 minutes with the ice on, and 10 minutes off. Apparantly too much icing can damage the nerves! This advice came from an orthopedic MA!

Re: Why does icing make my foot swell?

cindy on 7/29/98 at 19:15 (001138)

That's very interesting about the nerve damage from icing - my problem started out as PF, and I used ice directly on my foot (all over the bottom , more on the heel, and on the tarsal tunnel or under the ankle bone area). Now, I have a severe nerve problem in the tarsal area - I don't know if it was caused or contributed to by the icing, but it is interesting.