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Study Finds Compression Stockings Better Than Bandages for Leg Ulcer Treatment

Leg ulcers or chronic venous leg ulcerations are fairly common among the adult population, particularly the women. Usually caused by poor blood circulation in the legs, this may eventually cause damage or blockage to the veins which may then result to the breakdown of the skin and impaired healing. These very common chronic wounds can be very painful, reappear frequently, and has been shown to greatly affect a patient’s quality of life.

This condition has been traditionally managed by using multi-layered compression bandages that function by applying pressure on the affected leg. Now we might see a changing of the guard, so to speak, in the manner of treating this condition. A recent study which was published in the prestigious medical journal The Lancet has found that using compression stockings perform better that these bandages.

Compression Stocking Effective, Cost-efficient and Convenient

For this study, the researchers recruited 454 people suffering from venous leg ulcers and asked them to try the two methods. According to researchers from the University o f Manchester and University of York in the United Kingdom, the use of compression stockings has been found to be as effective as the compression bandages. Favoring the use of compression stockings were the findings that using this option resulted to less ulcer recurrence and allowed patients few nursing visits, thereby making it more cost-efficient.

It has been the common complaint of compression bandage users that these devices are bulky, unattractive, and greatly impedes normal footwear. It also takes time to apply these bandages and it may have to be changed frequently, necessitating repeated visits to the healthcare provider or nursing centers. This has become costly not only to the patients but also to the health bodies tasked for the implementation of government medical programs.

Advantages of Using Compression Stockings

Should compression stockings replace the bandages as the primary treatment option, patients may be greatly benefited. For one, the decrease in recurrence rate may mean less treatment and more time to enjoy life. This would also mean fewer visits to the healthcare providers for the application. In fact, patients may be taught how to apply these devices, making it more convenient and allowing savings in costs.

This may also eliminate the need for the patients to go to medical facilities for their regular treatment. Should they require assistance or replacements of these devices, they may avail of the services of the numerous accredited private clinics or health establishments located very conveniently in many areas.