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Compression Stockings

Compression Stockings

compression stockings

If you live in Lima, Celina or the surrounding areas of Auglaize County, OH, and you’re interested in managing swelling, giving your legs additional support throughout the workday, or even improving athletic performance, we have the perfect compression garment for you! There are endless styles and colors for you to choose from. Stop by the Vein Care Center to take a look or contact us to place an order. 

What Are Compression Stockings?

Compression stockings are garments that help improve the blood flow in your legs by gently squeezing the limb. They also prevent swelling and, to some extent, blood clots. Wearing compression stockings may also help the heavy or full feeling in the legs that is often a result of venous disease. Compression stockings are recommended following a vein treatment procedure for two weeks. This is not done by all practice in the country. It is the mainstay of our treatment recommendations because it helps the leg feel better after your procedure. By not wearing the compression stocking, it DOES NOT alter the outcome of the procedure. However, it DOES greatly help reduce post-procedure discomfort. Following your procedure, it is then recommended to wear knee-high compression stockings during long periods of standing, sitting or traveling.

Failure of compression stockings usage is required before any procedure will be covered by your insurance company. Though we know, the insurance company knows, you know and it is not professionally recommended in the medical literature that wearing compression stockings will cure your venous disease, it is a requirement tactic that insurance uses to deny coverage for procedures. Therefore, three months of compression stocking is required prior to submitting for a procedure. If you have been wearing stockings, please do not wear them for 48 hours prior to your appointment.

What Brands of Compression Stocking Are Available?

At the Vein Care Center, we carry only the best compression stockings, hosiery and socks on the market. We are proud suppliers of the following top-of-the-line brands:

  • Sigvaris®
  • Juzo®
  • Total Veins
  • Ease

Are There Different Types of Compression Stockings?

Yes! These aren’t your mother’s compression stockings! We carry three basic types of compression garments:

  • Medical – Designed to ensure correct fit, accurate compression, optimum therapeutic benefits and greater wearing comfort. Best suited for those with chronic venous disorders, swelling, skin changes, venous ulcers and anyone who has had or will be having a vein procedure.
  • Wellbeing – This fashionable collection helps promote leg health while providing relief from a range of common symptoms including tired, aching legs and swollen feet and ankles. We carry a multitude of colors, strength and sizes.
  • Sports – Sports products are perfect for athletic activity and recovery. Professional athletes, weekend warriors and active individuals alike can all benefit from wearing true graduated compression.

Compression stockings do come in different strengths: 8-15mmHg, 15-20mmHg, 20-30mmHg, 30mmHg-40mmHg and higher. This means that the pressure at the ankle is the second number (15mmHg, 20mmHg, etc.) and the pressure at the top of the garment is the first number (8mmHg, 15mmHg, etc.). Gravity is the strongest at the lowest part of the leg (ankle and feet), therefore, your garment is the tightest there. As you come up the leg, pressure can be decreased to achieve compression and aide in the return of blood towards the heart through the veins. Compression stockings do not prevent venous disease, however, they may defer the visible signs and symptoms of venous disease to later in life.

How do you know which strength to use?

A prescription is not needed for the lowest compression (8-15mmHg) and can usually be purchased at your pharmacy or drug store. For some patients, who feel uncomfortable with pressure on the legs, starting at a lower strength may be reasonable and more tolerable. This strength is also the minimum that can be considered for those who have no evidence of venous disease and can used for traveling, sports, hiking, etc. This should be discussed with us to assure the most comfort and safety with your garment.

The next level of compression (15-20mmHg) is the recommended strength for venous disease. It is also the recommended strength for maintenance of the legs once you have had your procedure. Typically, if your venous disease extends into the thigh, a thigh compression is recommended. If you are advised for a procedure to alleviate the concerns in the thigh or pelvis, you may be able to wear knee-high compression. These options will be discussed with you at your appointment. People who have had a Deep Venous Thrombosis (DVT), or a blood clot in the deep veins, have an increased risk of Post-Thrombotic Syndrome. The literature goes back and forth regarding wearing compression stockings after having a DVT. However, we recommend wearing a compression stocking (20-30mmHg), either knee or thigh-high, depending on the location of the clot, for at least the first two years following the DVT.

The next level of compression is 30-40mmHg. This strength is typically recommended for ulcers and patients who have skin changes or healed ulcers. Often times this is a knee-high garment because it is difficult to put on such a high strength garment.

Compression Stockings are also used in the treatment and maintenance of lymphedema. Which brings us to yet another important concept regarding compression stockings. What are they made of? Compression stockings can be circular-knit (like a t-shirt) or flat knit (like a sweater). They can also be lined with pads and silver-lined to protect from infections. Circular-knit fabric is recommended in venous diseases. Flat-knit is typical in patients who have lymphedema.

Board-certified and aesthetic-laser-certified family physician Dr. Manu B. Aggarwal, MHSA, MD, is an expert in treating vein disorders. She and her expert staff at the Vein Care Center in Lima, OH, are also committed to providing patients in Lima, Celina and the surrounding areas of Auglaize County with the very best in preventative services. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you.

***If you have arterial disease or diabetes or known venous disease, you should check with us to make sure compression stockings will be helpful for you and not harmful. Often times diabetes causes skin changes in the leg, called necrobiosis lipoidica, that can look like venous skin changes. Diabetes also increases your risk of arterial disease. Arteries carry blood to the legs. If the flow is already compromised due to arterial disease, compression can actually worsen blood flow to the leg. It is imperative to assess risk or presence of this condition to assure safety of your garment.

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