All Compression Garments Are Not Created Equal
Each person’s limb is unique and responds differently to compression; your age, the condition of your skin and tissues, and your ability to apply and remove a garment are important considerations in garment choice. Knowing the many options available and the differences between the various garment brands will help you find the best garment for your limb. Ready- made garments are generally a good starting point if your limb length and shape are fairly standard. If you have moderate or severe lymphedema, or if the shape of your limb is more bulbous in one or more areas, or your limb is extra short or long, you may need to be fitted for a custom made garment.
If you do not wear a daytime garment, the benefits of the intensive treatment will be lost, so fit and comfort are important. Your lymphedema therapist and fitter must be willing to explore options with you. The therapist should also periodically check the garment fit and effectiveness, and modify the system as needed, to ensure the best outcome. If a circular garment is not firm enough to control the swelling, you may also want to consider a different garment type or compression level for specific activities such as exercise or gardening. Remember to replace your garments at least every 6 months to ensure you are getting the prescribed compression.