An increasing number of compression systems available for treatment of venous leg ulcers and limited evidence on the relative effectiveness of these systems are available. The purpose of this study was to conduct a randomised controlled trial to compare the effectiveness of a four-layer compression bandage system and Class 3 compression hosiery on healing and quality of life (QL) in patients with venous leg ulcers. Data were collected from 103 participants on demographics, health, ulcer status, treatments, pain, depression and QL for 24 weeks. After 24 weeks, 86% of the four-layer bandage group and 77% of the hosiery group were healed (P = 0·24). Median time to healing for the bandage group was 10 weeks, in comparison with 14 weeks for the hosiery group (P = 0·018). The Cox proportional hazards regression found participants in the four-layer system were 2·1 times (95% CI 1·2-3·5) more likely to heal than those in hosiery, while longer ulcer duration, larger ulcer area and higher depression scores significantly delayed healing. No differences between groups were found in QL or pain measures. Findings indicate that these systems were equally effective in healing patients by 24 weeks; however, a four-layer system may produce a more rapid response.
Keywords: Compression; Quality of life; Varicose ulcer; Wound healing.
© 2012 The Authors. International Wound Journal © 2012 Medicalhelplines.com Inc and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.