Donning devices (foot slips and frames) enable elderly people with severe chronic venous insufficiency to put on compression stockings

Eur J Vasc Endovasc Surg. 2015 Feb;49(2):221-9. doi: 10.1016/j.ejvs.2014.11.005. Epub 2015 Jan 8.


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: NCT01432795.

Keywords: Application of stockings; Compliance; Compression therapy; Donning devices; Medical compression stockings; Venous disease.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Chronic Disease
  • Equipment Design
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Patient Compliance*
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Prospective Studies
  • Self Care / instrumentation*
  • Self-Help Devices*
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Stockings, Compression*
  • Switzerland
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Venous Insufficiency / diagnosis
  • Venous Insufficiency / therapy*

Associated data