What is Compression Stockings for Varicose Veins, Features of Choice

compression stockings for varicose veins

In order to maintain physiologically correct pressure in the lower extremities, in the complex therapy and prevention of varicose veins, compression stockings are widely used today.

In the medical literature, these special underwear are also called medical socks, anti-varicosis, compression underwear, or medical compression socks.

They are socks, recommended by phlebologists as a treatment and prevention of various problems in the blood vessels of the legs. Compression underwear is mainly used for varicose veins, thrombosis, trophic epithelial ulcers, thrombophlebitis, lymphedema.

  • The therapeutic effect of compression underwear is due to the effect of supporting, squeezing the dilated vein, which contributes to the redistribution of blood flow from the dilated and altered veins to the healthy ones.
  • Improves tissue nutrition, increases blood circulation
  • Most importantly, this shirt, when worn correctly and with the correct size, reduces the risk of blood clots forming.
  • And what is also important, in the absence of contraindications for compression underwear, there are no side effects, it is a safe and simple method of preventing varicose veins, keeping the veins in a natural physiological state.

The therapeutic effect of compression tights for varicose veins?

Previously, before the large-scale production of high-quality medical linen, elastic bandages were widely used, and their use had a number of disadvantages:

  • firstly, they must be applied very correctly every time, which doesn't always work and takes a long time.
  • secondly, the appearance of the bandages does not allow them to be used, for example, to work
  • thirdly, the low price for them turns out to be misleading as the bandages deteriorate very quickly which wipes out all savings.

What is the effect of wearing a medical medical shirt? By squeezing dilated veins, varicose vein compression garments accelerate blood flow through the deep veins, thereby eliminating venous congestion. In addition, modern high quality compression stockings provide a gradual reduction, ie a gradual decrease in pressure from the leg to the thigh or from the hand to the shoulder.

For example, on the lower leg, the pressure created by compression stockings or tights is at most 100%, and on the upper thigh it is 40%. This is the most convenient and physiologically determined pressure change that has a therapeutic effect. This mode of pressure distribution in the veins stimulates and normalizes the upward blood flow due to:

  • improvement and standardization of the valve apparatus
  • reduction of the enlarged lumen of the periphery, especially saphenous veins of the thighs and leg
  • increasing muscle pump effect - when muscles contract with physical exertion, blood is pushed upward.

However, it should be remembered that the treatment with compressive flax for varicose veins does not eliminate the root causes of venous insufficiency and is used before radical surgical treatment. This shirt mimics the situation - that dilated veins are sealed or removed.

In addition, non-surgical conservative treatment of leg diseases must be comprehensive. The maximum effect can be obtained if you use creams, ointments recommended by your doctor, lead a healthy lifestyle, wear compression stockings or tights every day, and also use folk remedies to treat varicose veins.

Contraindications for wearing compression stockings

As with any treatment, each drug or drug has a series of contraindications, and the medical shirt is no exception. Some people should absolutely not wear compression garments, others should wear them with care after a thorough diagnosis and consultation with a physician. If there are relative contraindications, you should consult a dermatologist, cardiologist, endocrinologist.

  • This underwear is absolutely contraindicated for atherosclerosis, thromboangiitis obliterans, endoarteritis, orthoarteritis. With these chronic diseases of the arteries of the legs, leading to a decrease in vessel lumen and systolic blood pressure of less than 80 mm. rt. Art. it is categorically impossible to reduce pressure on the lower extremities with the help of a medical shirt.
  • Medical mesh should be used with care by people with overly sensitive skin.
  • It is not advisable to wear compression underwear for inflammatory skin diseases, allergic skin reactions, various dermatitis, bed sores, open sores, acute thrombophlebitis and eczema.
  • Diabetes mellitus is a relative contraindication, as in case of damage to the vessels in the legs due to diabetes, these underwear should also not be worn.
  • With septic phlebitis and severe cardiopulmonary failure, when circulatory disturbances occur at rest, compression stockings should also not be worn.

Many people are afraid to start wearing compression briefs because there is an opinion that the jersey causes the development of atrophy of the muscular layer of the vein walls and when its use is discontinued the opposite negative effect can occur - when the venous wall cannot resist blood pressure in the vessel lumen. Therefore, due to atrophy of the vein walls, existing varicose veins will progress further.

Unfortunately, it is impossible to perform clinical studies on all veins subject to compression, but phlebologists believe this opinion is wrong since:

  • The patient cannot wear compression garments at all times.
  • In veins subjected to compression, blood flow decreases rather than stopping altogether.
  • Muscle wall atrophy occurs more often with a genetic disposition and a specific local inflammatory process with venous stasis and venous filling. And all this is reduced with the use of jersey.
  • This can only happen according to the initial sensations of the patients when the use of linen is discontinued. In this case, there is a temporary deterioration of the state and well-being for a certain time, which is explained not by the atrophy and progression of the varicose veins, but by a temporary decrease in the tone of the venous wall.
  • Patients' evaluations and feelings at the end of wearing compression briefs with varicose veins - it is difficult for most of them to get used to walking after wearing compression stockings. Many argue that by using a medical product, the legs become, so to speak, light and many no longer want to give up on its use.

How to Choose Compression Clothes

Medical compression underwear, shirts are divided into: hospital, which is used only in hospitals, prophylactic and therapeutic. We will consider in detail the compression grades of medical anti-varicose compression stockings, how to choose compression underwear, how to wear and care for them.

The most important thing is to buy compression socks, tights, and high-tops exclusively at specialized orthopedic salons or famous brand retailers. In them, trained personnel know how to accurately select the size of clothing, as the wrong size can make the treatment absolutely ineffective. In a special store, the seller will measure the leg in 4 places and select the size of the sock or sock according to a special table.

There are 4 degrees of compression:

  • 18-21 mm. rt. Art. Compression class 1 is a prophylactic compression that can and should even be used constantly by people: prone to varicose veins, pregnant women, people with early signs of varicose veins, when the veins under the skin stand out strongly, if there is pain in the legs after sitting or standing for an extended period, if spider veins are pronounced and swelling appears in the foot and ankle area at the end of the day, healthy people whose lifestyle and work force them to sit or stand for a long time - to office workers, drivers, hairdressers, salespeople.
  • 23 - 32 mm. rt. Art. Compression class 2 is the best popular class used to treat thrombophlebitis and varicose veins.
  • 34 - 46 mm. rt. Art. Compression class 3 - used for trophic disorders and severe venous insufficiency.
  • 49 plus 4 compression classes - used extremely rarely, with lymphatic edema.

Whoever is choosing anti-varicose knits for the first time should not immediately buy expensive 2nd degree compression underwear, it is possible that their vascular system will not take it. When you've been walking around in cheap underwear for awhile, get used to it, if you're comfortable with it, you can choose better and more expensive compression underwear.

For prevention, of course, it is worth using only underwear from the 1st compression class, and with the development of varicose veins, the compression class is determined by the phlebologist. Compression underwear cannot cure varicose veins, as the reasons for its appearance are very deep and the external influence can only be suspended and cannot develop any further, that is, compression stockings for varicose veins are designed to prevent the appearance of new varicose wreaths. In summer, of course, it is impossible to wear knits, so in the heat you should take your medications by mouth or use other treatment methods.

You should also know that any compression underwear maintains compression for no longer than 5 to 7 months.

The opinions of some women about the quality of underwear from various manufacturers show that expensive models are not always better in quality than cheap ones. The sheets made in Germany are of good quality and the prices are very reasonable.

What to look for when buying and how to avoid counterfeiting?

There are quality standards for medical compression underwear for varicose veins, one of the most significant and stringent is the European standard RAL-GZ-387. In order for a manufacturer to use the logo of this standard, it must pass rigorous certification in Germany or Switzerland. If the underwear has this certificate, it means it really is of high quality, creates a 40-70-100% distributed pressure and is therapeutic, you can learn more about this standard on the product packaging and label.

It pays to choose the manufacturer very carefully as there are many counterfeits in our market, so it is best to buy compression stockings or compression tights from retail stores or specialist shops, where experts will precisely select the right model of according to your measurements.

Since these meshes must be used every day, they must be hypoallergenic; to determine this, the purchased product must bear the mark of the European environmental safety standard Oeko-Tex Standard 10.

Are there any peculiarities when putting on compression socks, tights, golf?

You should be aware that even the second class of compression stockings, which is considered the most common, is sometimes "beyond your power" for the patient:

  • This is often due to the inconvenience and difficulty of putting underwear on your feet. The peculiarity of this type of knitting is that it cannot be used as children's pantyhose, collecting it on an accordion and pulling it up. Socks and tights should be put on gradually, spreading out over the leg. If a person has a big belly and tying a shoelace in a boot is already a problem, then it will also be difficult to put on underwear.
  • To facilitate placement, many use special devices offered in the same salons. Also gloves, which must be worn, can be both domestic and medical, as expensive underwear can be ruined at a manicure and underwear will slip better if you have your hands on the gloves.
  • Naturally, the toenails must be trimmed, filed, there must be no calluses, no roughness, otherwise the flax will burst quickly or there will be a lot of puffing.
  • It is also important that your legs are dry, as well as your underwear, so wear compression stockings in the morning when your legs are not swollen and rested.
  • It is especially difficult to use class 3 compression products - this is a lot of work, and if the patient trusts their phlebologist and is sure they need this treatment then you must be patient, otherwise you must not start treatment with this class. It is generally recommended to use class 3 and 4 compression using a special special device.

How to care for compression garments?

  • It is advisable to have 2 pairs of compression tights, as they must be washed every day - necessary to eliminate the smallest traces, dust, skin particles, as they can damage the clothes fibers more quickly than detergents.
  • It should only be washed by hand with children's soap, as it cannot be washed in washing machines. The water temperature during washing should not exceed 40°C, and it is also impossible to iron and whiten clothes.
  • Any rinse aid and conditioner have a destructive effect on the structure, therefore, they should not be used for washing either.
  • Dry the laundry flat on a horizontal surface, do not wring it, but just press gently on a towel. Do not dry the meshes with a battery, in a conventional dryer, in an upright position, or in the sun or with a hair dryer.
  • You must also take care of the silicone strips on the socks, they quickly lose their fixation properties after contact with water, try not to get wet when washing, but dry with an alcohol napkin.