Researchers from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland found that the risk of blood clots in stroke patients didn’t improve when they wore thigh high stockings. In addition, the researchers reported that 5 percent of patients developed ulcers, dead skin tissue, and blisters.
As a result of their findings, the study authors suggest reevaluating current recommendations that all stroke patients wear support hose after surgery.
Although this research indicates that compression wear may not reduce the risk of dangerous blood clots and deep vein thrombosis, other research shows that compression garments are often improperly used, even by nursing staff and medical personnel.
Patients are often prescribed the wrong size stockings, they may be instructed to wear thigh high stockings when knee high varieties work just as well, and both medical personnel and patients may have trouble putting the stockings on the right way.
What’s the best brand to use? Stockings manufactured by Jobst, Juzo, Mediven, and Sigvaris, come with detailed instructions on how to use the legwear for best results.
Many studies have found that using stockings contributes to increased blood flow and reduces the risk of venous disorders. Although this Lancet study found that stroke patients don’t benefit, compression legwear may still help relieve aching, tired legs, reduce the risk of varicose veins and leg swelling, and cut the risk of blood clots during travel and after surgery – but only if they’re used properly.