Compression Stockings as an Initial Treatment

Updated on: August 18, 2014

In many cases for individuals in Tampa, Florida and throughout the country, before insurance companies will cover the cost of varicose veins treatment or procedures, they may require that the individual try more conservative means of treating the symptoms of varicose veins. This may include diet, exercise, weight loss and/or compression stockings. Patients may also be encouraged to elevate their legs and try other home remedies for treatment.

It is important to note, of course, that these conservative treatments do not get rid of varicose veins, but may help relieve their symptoms. The only way to get rid of varicose veins is by removing or destroying them. To accomplish this, surgical or minimally-invasive treatments are necessary. It is important to discuss one's treatment options with a trained professional as well as to help determine if one's insurance requires conservative treatments before procedures or treatments will be covered.

Compression stockings work to improve blood flow and circulation. They are specially fitted to reduce pooling in varicose veins and spider veins and bring relief to symptoms such as aching, heaviness and swelling. Compression stockings may also help to keep the condition from getting worse and may help reduce the risk of blood clots due to long plane rides or car rides.

So how do these stockings work? They apply pressure in a gradient fashion; the pressure is highest at the ankle with less pressure applied as they make their way up the leg. This essentially milks the blood back towards the heart. Compression stockings come in different strengths and should be prescribed by a physician to ensure that the patient receives the proper treatment. Over-the-counter compression stockings may be available, but they may offer less compression than prescription compression stockings, and thus may not be an adequate treatment.

When selecting a compression stocking that is right for you, it is also important to choose one that you feel comfortable wearing, as they should be worn all day. There are various styles, colors and brands available, and just like most articles of clothing, you may end up paying more for name brands. The stockings should be strong but not too tight where you cannot get them on or off. Those with weak hands or arthritis may opt for devices that may be helpful in putting them on.

The compression stockings should be worn during the day and removed at night. At night, individuals may be encouraged to keep their legs elevated when not wearing compression stockings. Patients may be required to wear compression stockings for years or even for life. It is important to discuss how long one must wear compression stockings with a vein specialist in the Tampa area for a better understanding of the treatment. The cost of compression stockings may vary from $30 to $50 per pair, with one pair lasting around six months to a year. Many recommend hand washing compression stockings to help maintain the elasticity.

Learn more about compression stockings in Tampa, Florida.

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