​Comparing The Top Cold Therapy Units: Which Unit Is Best For You?

Posted by Source Ortho on 28th Apr 2021

​Comparing The Top Cold Therapy Units: Which Unit Is Best For You?

Which Cold Therapy Unit Is Right For You?

The use of cold therapy machines is increasingly popular for their ability to decrease pain and recovery time from surgery or injury. Cold therapy has many benefits, including speeding up recovery and reducing pain and inflammation.

How Does A Cold Therapy Machine Work?

A Cold Therapy Machine is essentially a cooler with a motor and pad attachment. It fills the cooler with ice and then topping it off with water. Once the unit is turned on, it begins pumping ice-cold water through the attached pad to deliver effective cold therapy to a specific body area. Typically used post-surgery or injury, cold therapy is proven effective at reducing swelling and pain and decreasing recovery time by up to 3 days.

Is A Cold Therapy Machine More Effective Than An Ice Pack?

We get this question a lot, and we understand why. A cold therapy machine is a much more significant investment than a simple ice pack. So, is a cold therapy unit worth the price? Absolutely! While a cold therapy unit can cost between $100 - $500 or more, they are worth the investment.

Provides Longer, Colder Treatment

The primary benefit of using a cold therapy machine vs. an ice pack is the length of treatment you can receive. Whereas an ice pack will tend to get warm rather quickly, many cold therapy machines can provide consistent cold therapy treatment for 6-10 consecutive hours, depending on your unit.

Delivers More Effective Cold Treatment

Not only does a cold therapy unit offer a much longer treatment time, but it also is better able to form the area of treatment to provide more effective therapy. For instance, applying an ice pack to your shoulder can be difficult as ice packs are not as malleable when frozen and may be hard to hold. However, a cold therapy machine has specific pads designed to fit particular body areas, making for a more proper fit. Each cold therapy pad will also come with straps to easily secure it onto your body, which makes wearing it a cinch.

Many Cold Therapy Units Offer Compression

In addition to providing effective cold therapy to treat post-op or injury, many cold therapy units also offer a level of compression. While all units will provide an aspect of passive compression, many other cold therapy units offer intermittent cold therapy with intermittent active compression for added treatment benefits to reduce swelling.

The Top Cold Therapy Units

There are many cold therapy units on the market, which can make choosing the best cold therapy unit for you complicated and seem overwhelming at times. We’re breaking down our top-selling cold therapy units to help you choose the best one!

Longest Run Time: The Breg Kodiak Cooler

If you are looking for a cold therapy unit to provide you with cold therapy for long periods, the Breg Kodiak Cold Therapy Unit is the one for you. Providing up to 8-10 hours of consistent cold therapy, the Kodiak has one of the longest run times on the market. It comes with six pad options and an optional battery pack if plugging it into an outlet is not an option.

Get it here starting at $159.00.

Most Reliable: The Breg Polar Care Cube

Reliable and compact, the Breg Polar Care Cube Cold Therapy Unit offers up to 6-8 hours of cold therapy. The Polar Care Cube has a high flow rate and six pad options. While the unit comes with a 6-month manufacturer warranty, you probably won't need it as these units are durable and built to last.

Get it here starting at $129.00.

Most Pad Options: The Aircast Cryo Cuff IC Cooler

We love the Aircast Cryo Cuff IC Cooler for many reasons, one being its extensive pad options. The IC Cooler can provide powerful cold therapy from the shoulder to the foot. It also offers intermittent compression, making it an excellent choice for those undergoing ankle or foot surgery. The Cryo/Cuff IC unit is less expensive than many other cold compression units.

Get it here starting at $114.25.

Best Intermittent Compression: The Breg Polar Care Wave

Breg Inc Polar Care Wave Cold Compression System

The Breg Polar Care Wave is our top choice for intermittent active cold compression, designed to reduce pain and edema and optimize patient recovery. With six pad options and adjustable compression levels, the Wave is the top choice for many recovering from knee, or foot and ankle surgery or injury.

Get it here starting at $249.00.

Quiet but Powerful: Ossur Cold Rush

Ossur Ossur Cold Rush Cold Therapy

Known to have the quietest motor and the best ice-to-water ratio of any cold therapy unit on the market, the Ossur Cold Rush Cold Therapy Unit is a top choice for many. The Cold Rush has eight pad options, a 4-6 hour run time, and a durable, whisper-quiet motor, making it an excellent home-use choice. While it is already a lightweight unit, it does come in a compact version that is great for travel!

Get it here starting at $174.99.

Choosing the best cold therapy unit for you can be difficult with so many options available. If you have any questions about the cold therapy machines we offer, our customer service team is happy to help. You can call us at 866-425-3209, email us at, or chat with a knowledgeable customer service rep on

Ready to purchase your cold therapy unit? Use coupon code COLD10 for $10 off your order of $100 or more!

Already have a cold therapy unit and looking to get the most out of it? Check out our post on our go-to cold therapy hacks!