Compression hose, also called compression stockings, are specialized hosiery that are designed to help improve the circulation in the legs to prevent venous disease such as swelling, varicose veins and blood clots. They are made from elastic, and compress the legs to help the muscles keep the blood flowing back to the lungs and heart.
Venous insufficiency occurs when there is too much pressure on the veins in the legs so that the wall of the vein becomes weak and the tiny valves inside the veins stop working properly. This results in the blood pooling in the vein, causing it to bulge and twist.
Compression hose help to reduce the pressure in the veins and prevent the veins from shutting down. They force the blood to pass through narrow channels, so the arterial pressure is increased, making it easier for the blood to reach the heart. They also relieve the symptoms of aching legs.
Compression hose come in several different types. They are made with much stronger elastic than regular support hose or athletic stockings. Knee-high hose are often used to prevent the formation of blood clots as well as increase circulation in the lower legs. They are also good for treating the ulcers that may develop in the lower legs when varicose veins are formed.
The two main types of compression stockings are gradient and anti-embolism. Gradient stockings are intended to remedy weak vein valves. They compress more around the ankles and less towards the knees and thighs. Our specialist often recommends this type for people who are prone to blood clots and swelling in the ankles and calves. They may also be prescribed to treat venous complications caused by lymphedema, diabetes, cellulitis and thrombosis for people who are still walking.
Anti-embolism stockings are often called TED hose. They are prescribed to treat lymphatic and venous drainage of the leg. They also have distributed pressure from the ankle to the thigh, and are most often prescribed for people who do not walk.
Compression stockings are also used by athletes in the hope that they will improve the efficiency of the muscles. While this may or may not be true, many athletes have anecdotal evidence that they benefit from the stockings.
Both types of compression hose come in knee-high or thigh-high length. Knee-high is considered the best choice for the prevention of deep vein thrombosis. However, this is a decision that may be made by our specialist. Compression stockings may also be custom-made for a specific individual.
If you believe you are beginning to develop varicose veins or have any symptoms of venous insufficiency, compression stockings may be right for you. Talk to the venous experts at the South Texas Vein Institute in Edinburg to learn more about how compression hose can benefit you. Contact us today to schedule your consultation!