What are Medical Grade Anti-embolism Hose?
Medical grade anti-embolism hose (The letters t.e.d. are an acronym for thrombosis embolic deterrent), often referred to as Ted hose, are worn to treat edema, a buildup-of-lymphatic-fluids, which causes swelling in the legs, ankles and feet. They are often prescribed by a physician for bed-ridden or immobile patients who are convalescing after a surgery or wheelchair bound, experience chronic edema, paralysis or numbness, or have a history of Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT), or pulmonary embolism.
Note: Ted hose is a generic industry label that refers to all non-gradient (their compression is distributed equally from the ankle to the top of the stocking) anti-embolism stockings, however, Kendall company is the only manufacturer that sells over-the-counter anti-embolism hose under the registered trademark, T.E.D.™.
Medical grade anti-embolism stockings are typically used in hospitals or other medical facilities and are generally white, thigh-length, and open toed (open toed stockings allows a physician or attendant to check the foot’s pulse without having to remove the hose.). They are issued to post-op patients who are bed-ridden or non-ambulatory. The elasticity duration for a medical embolism stockings is approximately two weeks, after which time will be replaced with a new one, or both, and worn until the risk of edema or blood clots is no longer a risk to the patient.
Note: Edema is not necessarily attributed to just one single medical problem though it is most commonly associated with obesity, diabetes, or both.
Anti-embolism stockings compression ranges
Anti-embolism stockings deliver an equally distributed amount of compression at the ankle and up the leg. This compression, when combined with the muscle pump effect of the calf, aids in circulating blood and lymph fluid through the legs (in non-ambulatory patients). The amount of compression and sizing is determined by the circumference and length of the wearers leg and calf and what is being treated. They are available over-the-counter and by prescription.
Warnings associated with wearing non-gradient Embolism stockings
There are some precautions to keep in mind: the legs should never be crossed and the hose should be kept as smooth and wrinkle-free as possible. Special care should be taken not to let compression stockings bunch up or bind behind the knees or around the thighs. If sitting, the legs should be elevated. The patient should also check for any allergic reactions or irritations that may occur due to the materials in compression stockings.
There are some circumstances when embolism stockings should not be worn (e.g. over recent skin grafts or skin conditions such as dermatitis, when open sores and gangrene are present).
Compression stockings should also not be worn if extreme swelling of the legs or vascular complications are present.
Should diabetics wear anti-embolism stockings?
For any diabetic who has circulation problems causing swelling in the legs and feet, a long term condition such as arterial-disease or insufficiency, they will usually be fitted for over-the-counter compression stockings in which case it’s a good idea to purchase at least two pair and switch them often.
If their leg size is not available in custom-fitted embolism stockings, generally they will be measured by a qualified-staff-person at a pharmacy or medical supply store and the measurements will be sent off to a compression-stocking-manufacturer and the compression stockings will then be custom-made.
How often should Embolism stockings be worn?
Depending on your circumstances, the length of time that compression stockings will be worn should be determined by your physician, health care provider, or occupational therapist.
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Filed under: TED hose