Medical Uses Of Compression Socks For Chronic Conditions

Updated on October 17, 2022
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Nowadays, more and more people are moving away from mainstream medical treatments for their chronic ailments and prefer other ways to combat symptoms and side effects. The health and wellness community has also seen a boom in product innovation to cater to such needs. One such product that has become a popular lifestyle choice are compression socks. Designed around the science of compression, compression socks help improve blood circulation to reduce pain and swelling in the legs and feet. You may have heard them being used by nurses, professional athletes, or may have even worn a pair during a long flight or on trips that required long hours of walking. But in fact, they are much more multipurpose. 

Compression socks are also prescribed and used by those suffering from chronic health conditions. Research and development has concluded that compression socks can help alleviate the pain and other symptoms experienced by patients diagnosed with chronic ailments. If you, too, suffer from such a condition and are looking for additional treatment options or are caring for an elderly, then this article will help you. Here are some chronic illnesses that can benefit from the use of compression socks. 


Edema is a painful condition that can be explained as the swelling in any part of the body. When it comes to compression socks, they are particularly helpful in treating peripheral edema that occurs in the lower legs. You can identify a case of peripheral edema if the skin around the calf and ankle appears stretched, shiny, and swollen. This happens because of the liquid being trapped outside the blood vessels in the body. As the liquid is naturally drawn to the legs due to gravity, painful swelling occurs, which is challenging to cope with. Graduated compression socks for edema, help by applying the right pressure to push the fluid up and reduce the swelling. This makes it easier for patients to move around, especially if they need to walk or sit for long hours with ease. 


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While diabetes is primarily a blood sugar disease, it is known to lead to specific foot problems as well, such as reduced blood flow, swelling, and increased risk of infection. This is why foot care is an integral part of a diabetic’s lifestyle, and compression socks can be a valuable part of their health regime. Several studies show that compression socks are useful in reducing diabetes’ side effects, especially diabetes-related edema, by reducing the painful swelling that occurs. Specific compression socks are built to prevent moisture build-up, and this kind can help keep the feet dry and protected against injuries and possible ulcers and infections. Different levels of pressure are prescribed depending on the type of diabetes and the symptoms being experienced, so you should consult a doctor and select the right kind. 

Deep Vein Thrombosis 

Thrombosis is a naturally occurring condition in which a blood clot fully or partially blocks off a blood vessel. Blood clots can occur commonly due to pregnancy, injury, or post-surgery either due to the procedure or due to a long period of bed rest. If you notice some irritation and swelling, it could indicate thrombosis; however, it usually does not present clear symptoms, making it all the more dangerous and challenging to identify. Compression socks help alleviate the painful symptoms of thrombosis and help prevent deep vein thrombosis, which is a medical emergency. They apply pressure and allow blood to flow in the blood vessels preventing fluid accumulation and clot formation. When it comes to compression, you need to wear properly fitted socks. Start with one level of compression, and if you continue to experience fluid accumulation and swelling, then replace them with an increased compression level to notice visible results. In any case, if you are noticing symptoms of deep vein thrombosis, Dallas vein clinic suggests consulting a doctor immediately because the blood clot can travel and lodge in your heart and lungs, which can be fatal.

Chronic Venous Insufficiency 

The venous system consists of the body’s veins and arteries and is responsible for bringing back deoxygenated blood to the heart and lungs and returning oxygenated blood to the entire body. When insufficiency of the venous system occurs, there is inadequate blood circulation in the body, causing impaired blood flow to the lower body deep veins. The chronic disease can result in leg ulcers in the lower limbs, which is a sufficiently painful condition. While compression socks cannot directly cure the underlying disease, they are a powerful remedy for the side-effects caused. By applying gentle pressure on the legs, compression socks push the blood upwards to flow away from the lower limbs and prevent them from flowing backward again. This helps reduce the feeling of pain, aching, and tiredness of the legs and feet, experienced by patients suffering from chronic venous insufficiency. In fact, according to a study, compression therapy is still vital for patients with chronic venous insufficiency.

Key Takeaway

Living with a chronic illness can be challenging and often debilitating, but with the right treatment and course of action, it does not have to be. While medical treatment should never be ignored for alternatives, it can be supplemented with the use of specific tools and techniques. Compression socks are a quick fix to most chronic illnesses that cause swelling of the lower limbs due to fluid accumulation. They are the perfect remedy that can become a part of the health care routine of patients with such diseases. However, we highly recommend that you consult your doctor and discuss your case in detail before you try any on. Once they give the go-ahead and recommend the compression that will suit you the best, you can go on and incorporate compression socks as part of your treatment plan. 

What are your thoughts on compression socks? Any tips on selecting the right kind? We would love to hear from you in the comment section below. 

The Editorial Team at Healthcare Business Today is made up of skilled healthcare writers and experts, led by our managing editor, Daniel Casciato, who has over 25 years of experience in healthcare writing. Since 1998, we have produced compelling and informative content for numerous publications, establishing ourselves as a trusted resource for health and wellness information. We offer readers access to fresh health, medicine, science, and technology developments and the latest in patient news, emphasizing how these developments affect our lives.