Objective/background: Compression therapy is highly effective in the treatment of post-thrombotic syndrome and venous leg ulcer. On average, 50-60% of the patients cooperate with compression therapy. Therefore, it is necessary to improve the user-friendliness. This prospective study investigated whether the use of donning devices can contribute to improving user-friendliness.
Methods: Forty patients aged >65 years with severe chronic venous insufficiency (CVI; C4-C6) successively donned compression stockings in a randomized order: one 40 mmHg (CS40) or two superimposed 20 mmHg (CS20+20), each with open toe (CS-o-t) and closed toe (CS-c-t), using donning devices (three foot slips for CS-o-t; two foot slips and three frames for CS-c-t). The study endpoint was that the stocking was completely donned and correctly positioned on the patient's leg. The success rate and its association with age, sex, first time versus second time user, body mass index, abdominal circumference, ability to reach the forefoot with the hand, and hand grip strength were analyzed. Additionally, subjective evaluation by the patients was performed.
Results: Without donning devices, success with CS40-c-t was 60% (24/40 patients) and with CS20+20-c-t 70% (28/40 patients) (p = .220). Using donning devices increased success rates significantly. With CS40-o-t the success rate was 88% (35/40 patients; p = .001) and with CS40-c-t it was 90% (36/40 patients; p = .002). With CS20+20-o-t and CS20+20-c-t, the success rate was 88% (35/40 patients; p = .016). The proportion of patients who successfully used either CS40 or CS20+20 increased from 73% to 93%. Relevant for the patients' success was the ability to reach the forefoot with the hand, and hand grip strength. Subjectively, donning with a device was rated significantly better than without.
Conclusion: Donning devices significantly improve the ability of elderly patients with CVI to don compression stockings successfully. However, there are differences in user-friendliness among the devices..
Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01432795.
Keywords: Application of stockings; Compliance; Compression therapy; Donning devices; Medical compression stockings; Venous disease.
Copyright © 2014 European Society for Vascular Surgery. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.