The Role of Compression Stockings
Graduated compression garments come in knee-high and thigh-high styles. In this case the term “graduated” means that stronger pressure is delivered at the ankles. As the compression stockings continue up the legs this pressure gradually decreases. Thus much less compression is at the top. This aids leg veins in bringing blood back up the legs and towards the heart.
Most major insurance companies require patients to first try to manage their symptoms by wearing prescription stockings 20-30 mmHg in strength. While this can be helpful, it won’t resolve the vein disease. It is seen as only a formality. In practice, most patients thinking about VenaCure™ have already tried hose. This and other conservative methods offer just short term, limited relief.
Delaying Symptoms with Compression Stockings
It should be noted however that compression can be helpful in delaying the progress of vein disease. In the early stages they can, at times, prevent the problem from getting worse to the point where treatment is needed. They’re also capable of reducing many veins symptoms to some degree. Patients benefit only when they wear the support.
This being said, You must wear prescription compression hose for a two week period after any VenaCure™ procedure. First support therapy lowers the risk of blood clots in the larger veins of the legs. It also speeds healing and reduces excess swelling and bruising. Additionally, compression therapy ensures that the treated veins remain sealed.
Strengths of Compression Hose
Compression hose are available in varying “strengths” based on how much is needed. We measure in millimeters of mercury (mmHg), the same scale that is used to describe atmospheric pressure. For example, stockings rated at 8-15 mmHG deliver 8 units of compression at the top and 15 at the ankles. This is the lowest we typically prescribe. By comparison 15-20 mmHg is medium support, and 20-30 is firm, the 30-40 rating is rated as “extra-firm.” We recommend 20-30 mm HG stockings after a VenaCure™ procedure.
The only real concern is choosing a pair which aren’t too tight as this can interfere with circulation from the heart to the legs. Some patients consider the stockings very uncomfortable. However, there are no other risks with this type of therapy.