TED hose are medically prescribed, tight-fitting stockings. Their primary purpose is to aid in healthy blood flow and prevent blood from clotting after surgery or to help those with circulatory conditions that often lead to clotting and other serious health problems. Some patients also wear TED hose on a regular basis to help with blood flow. TED is an acronym that stands for thromboembolic disease.
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Many patients required to wear TED hose are often immobile to some degree. Inactivity tends to cause muscle atrophy and poor circulation. In some patients, blood settles in the legs. TED hose help keep blood flowing through the tissues when the body is at rest for extended periods by keeping constant pressure on the skin. TED hose also help swelling from occurring as the result of poor blood flow. Generally, TED hose are sized based on the size of a patient's legs. Hose that fit too snugly can lead to further problems, while loosefitting stockings often do not perform properly.
Specific surgical procedures come with the risk of blood clotting and poor circulation, especially in at-risk patients or those taking blood medications. Some patients are required to wear TED stockings prior to surgery to prevent clotting before or during their operation. Stockings are usually worn for one or two months following surgery, or during periods of inactivity that sometimes lead to clotting and circulation problems.
For those suffering from poor circulation, commonly seniors, TED hose are worn regularly or under specific circumstances. The stockings help keep the legs warm and the blood flowing properly so patients can be more active in their day-to-day lives. Some people wear TED hose when flying, as high altitudes sometimes impede blood flow. With the legs warm and active, the heart can properly pump blood through the rest of the body.
Wearing TED Hose
Patients who are prescribed TED hose keep the stockings on throughout the day. They are usually removed once a day for bathing. Removing the stockings also helps the legs get sunlight and fresh air. Although TED hose fit closely to the skin, they tend to bunch up and bind the joints. Therapists and patients routinely inspect the stockings for runs and to ensure they don't hinder circulation.
Although very durable, TED hose absorb sweat and other bodily fluids (especially in the elastic bands) and need to be laundered frequently. Prolonged wear is usually not recommended. Simple cold or warm wash cycles or quick hand laundering usually keeps them clean. Ten to 20 minutes on a low-heat dryer setting is all that's commonly needed to dry them after washing. Bleaching TED hose is usually not recommended.
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