cold therapy

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The treatment of a sports injury by the indirect application of ice or a cold compress. The cold acts reduces pain, inflammation, and bleeding, but only if applied immediately after injury since most bleeding occurs within the first few min. The ice is usually applied for 10–20 min; fatty tissue requires a longer period than lean tissue. Direct application of ice must be avoided because it can cause frostbite. Cold treatment may delay the healing of some conditions. See also RICE.

Subjects: Sports and Exercise Medicine.

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