Objective: To measure and compare the interface pressures achieved with two compression bandage systems - a four-layer system (4LB) and a two-layer short-stretch system (SSB) - with a new two-layer system (2LB), which uses an etalonnage (performance indicator) to help achieve the correct therapeutic pressure for healing venous leg ulcers - recommended as 40 mmHg.
Method: 32 nurses with experience of using compression bandages applied each of the three systems to a healthy female volunteer in a sitting position. The interface pressures and time taken to apply the systems were measured. A questionnaire regarding the concept of the new system and its application in comparison to the existing two systems was then completed by the nurses.
Results: The interface pressures achieved show that many nurses applied very high pressures with the 4LB (25% achieving pressures > 50 mmHg) whereas the majority of the nurses (75%) achieved a pressure of < 30 mmHg when using the SSB. A pressure of 30-50 mmHg was achieved with the new 2LB. The SSB took the least time to be applied (mean: 1 minute 50 seconds) with the 4LB the slowest (mean: 3 minutes 46 seconds). A mean time of 2 minutes 35 seconds was taken to apply the 2LB. Over 63% of the nurses felt the 2LB was very easy to apply.
Conclusion: These results suggest that the 2LB achieves the required therapeutic pressure necessary for the management of venous leg ulcers, is easy to apply and may provide a suitable alternative to other multi-layer bandage systems.