Elastic Compression Garments
Elastic compression garments are the single most basic means to manage tissue edema and extremity swelling associated with lymphatic and venous disorders. They are relied on as the first and primary treatment option, just as aspirin is called on to treat a headache. Elastic compression garments compress the entire extremity, and in turn compress the veins or the lymph system within the effected extremity, restoring equilibrium between the supply and drainage of the tissues. The aim of treatment is to increase adequate fluid transport, reduce swelling, and in the process, help the patient manage their condition.
Elastic compression garments an offered in a variety of fabric materials, but in general fall into two categories: Circular knit and Flat knit. Circular knit garments are seamless, are offered in a lower range of compressive strengths (8mmHg to 50mmhg), are typically less conspicuous when worn, and are intended for less sever edematous conditions. Flat knit garments are seamed, are offered in a higher range of compressive strengths (21mmHg to 50+mmHg), are typically more conspicuous when worn, and are intended for more sever edematous conditions.