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When someone applies a rubefacient ( something that increases blood flow to the skin, turning it red), what effect does this have on the underlying tissue? Is blood supply increased radially from where the rubefacient was applied and thereby increasing blood flow to underlying tissue (I'm thinking up to a few centimeters of muscle) or is blood supply essentially being stolen locally in order to bring it to the skin?

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  • $\begingroup$ Rubefacients cause cutaneous vasodilation (hence the redness), but they are a very broad group of drugs, and have multiple modes of action. They have different effects and side effects (locally and/or systemically). You need to specify the drug. Whatever it is it probably won't be an effective way to improve muscular blood supply, and if this is a medical question you really should talk to a doctor before applying topicals willy-nilly. $\endgroup$ – Harry Vervet Sep 26 '15 at 1:50

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