We’re revealing the secret to comfortable legs – compression stockings! Find out more about our high-quality circular-knit stockings such as Memory, Memory Aloe Vera, Memory Men, Lastofa Verde, Lastofa, and Lastofa Cotton.
We also offer edema patients a broad range of flat-knit compression stockings such as Lastofa Forte and Lastofa Extra, which have different materials, designs, and special features.
What does compression mean exactly?
The word ‘compression’ essentially means ‘pressing together’. The technical term for medical compression is derived from this and stands for mechanical pressure which is applied to a specific part of the body. Compression therapy can either be used preventively (with sports, for example) or to treat acute diseases. Compression is predominantly seen in the form of tights or stockings. Ofa also offers compression supplies for arms and hands .
Depending on the vascular disease at hand and the extent of its impact, different types of compression is used in medicine ( flat-knit vs. circular-knit ). Additionally, compression classes are divided into different degrees of severity.
Compression for vein disorders
To treat vein disorders , doctors often prescribe compression stockings. The compression pressure applied by the tight stockings ensure that the venous valves close and speed up the pumping of blood back to the heart. What’s more, it allows metabolic waste to be removed more quickly and thus reduces swellings.
Compression for edema
When treating edema (accumulation of water), pressure is applied to the entire lymphatic system through compression. This activates ‘decongestion’ , ensuring that water retention can flow off better and more quickly. In the case of conditions like lipedema or lymphedema , compression stockings are an integral component of medical therapy.
Unlike compression stockings, support stockings only have a preventive effect. When sitting down or standing for a prolonged period, such as when the legs get heavy and swell up while travelling, support stockings can provide relief. They do not help if a medical indication already exists.
The benefits of compression stockings
It is not only the veins that benefit from wearing compression stockings. Other factors that can be improved through compression are:
What does compression help with?
Every registered doctor can prescribe compression stockings. They are often used to treat the following conditions:
Compression for the prevention of thrombosis while travelling
Circular-knit or flat-knit – what’s the difference?
Depending on the condition, either circular-knit or flat-knit stockings are recommended. Generally, the following rules apply:
Circular-knit compression for vein disorders: These are especially elastic, both vertically and horizontally, which means that they are very stretchy lengthwise as well as crosswise. As such, they are easier to put on. Circular knitting machines work with a round cylinder that contains between 300 and 520 needles. The number of needles remains constant throughout the entire knitting process, whereas the stitch sizes vary and different circumferences can be knitted for one stocking. This type of compression stocking applies light to medium-strong pressure.
Flat-knit compression for edema (such as lipedema or lymphedema): Flat-knit compression stockings are less elastic lengthwise and crosswise compared to circular-knit stockings (the only exception is Lastofa Forte ). They are, thus, barely stretchy and are perfectly fitted to the patient’s measurements. Flat-knit compression applies particularly high pressure. The flat-knit stocking is produced in different individual components, which are then sewn together with a seam.
Vertical elasticity means that the compression stocking stretches lengthwise – i.e. from the foot to the thigh. Horizontal elasticity refers to the elasticity between the inside and outside of the thigh.
Compression Classes I - IV
- Class 1: Heavy legs, no edema, minor cases of varicose veins
- Class 2: Swellings, edema, prominent varicose veins
- Class 3: Chronic venous insufficiency, thrombosis, open wounds
- Class 4: Lipedema, lymphedema
Compression stockings: Putting them on and care