Wondering whether the compression stockings you wear offer the adequate pressure recommended by your physician? According to a recent study, 1 in 10 stockings fail to deliver accurate compression levels to patients with venous disease, deep vein thrombosis, and restless legs syndrome.
Researchers from Hawaii published in the November 2012 issue of the journal Phlebology had volunteers wear six pairs of compression stockings sequentially and daily every day for a month. There were 2 pairs of 20-30 mmHg stockings, 2 pair of 30-40 mmHg stockings, and 2 pair of 40-50 mmHg stockings in the six-pair set. The research volunteers measured the stockings’ compression levels while sitting and standing and performing several exercises.
The results showed that 160 out of 180 of the stockings failed to deliver the appropriate level of compression – as much to 5 mmHg below or above the identified pressure measurement. This situation happened most often in stockings of lower compression – none of the 30-40 mmHg and 40-50 mmHg stockings had inaccurate pressure measurements.
What does this mean to you? The take-home idea is that compression stockings aren’t foolproof, and even relatively new stockings can lose pressure. Replace your stockings regularly and be sure to purchase from a reputable retailer after first having a professional measure you for size and fit.