My name is Robb McLeod and I have been a PTA for nine (9) years. Physical Therapy has been a part of my life since I was young. My father was a Physical Therapist who began his career in 1965. He recently retired in Jan of 2010. My father is the one who first introduced me to Jobst stockings. He has been an advocate of the stockings since the 1980s when he had participated in a class in Toledo Ohio where he toured the place where the stockings were made. He even met the owner of the company! Jobst stockings are specifically designed to address edema caused by venous insufficiency. The design of the stockings is as such that it will provide the most pressure at the ankle and foot and will progressively decrease as the stocking goes up the calf. This will help push the fluid back towards the heart and hopefully help the body eliminate the excess fluid normally. Many doctors will prescribe Thrombo Embolic Deterrent (TED) Hose to help relieve swelling; however, the pressure that the TED Hose provides is the same from foot to calf which will not be effective in pushing the fluid up towards the leg. In all my years working in physical therapy I have never witnessed TED Hose relieving swelling in the lower extremities of the person wearing them, but, I have had good success with Jobst stockings. To measure someone for the Jobst stockings, measure around the smallest part of the ankle and the largest part of the calf. The measurements will fall within a range that corresponds to sizes small, medium, large, extra-large, and so on. One pair will cost $35.00-$40.00 dollars. To clean they must be washed in cold water and should be air-dried, as directed by the manufacturer. They can be difficult to apply, but an able-bodied person or caregiver should be able to apply appropriately. All Healthcare workers are also good patient advocates; so, if you have a client with persistent swelling in the lower extremities, AND they have good skin, AND, they do not have Congestive Heart Failure (CHF,) consider getting some Jobst stockings, as they may help.
Robb McLeod LPTA