Adjustable compression wraps: applications & benefits
This MOH Focus reviews the scope of application as well as the benefits of adjustable compression wraps. This paper is available to download in English, French, German, Italian, Polish and Spanish.
What are wraps?
Adjustable compression devices with inelastic properties.
When are they used?
For the management of lymphedema, chronic venous insufficiency and lipedema.
What makes them so special?
The combination of material attributes (high working pressure, low resting pressure) and design properties (self-adjustability) offers many benefits over conventional bandages (References 1-20).
Benefit 1: self-management
- Easy and quick self-application by patient or caregiver
- Ideal for patients with limited access to care centers
- Patient can tighten wraps when they loosen due to edema reduction
- Possibility to loosen in case of discomfort
- Better pressure maintenance over time
Self-hygiene & skin care
- Wrap and liner can be easily removed and washed if needed
- Hygiene and skin care can be performed at home and more regularly
Benefit 2: enhanced treatment efficacy (upper & lower limbs)
- Effective edema reduction & maintenance
- Maintenance of appropriate compression lovel
- Reduced pain & heaviness
- Increased mobility
- Improved skin integrity
- Improved leg shape
- Greater limb volume reduction compared to bandages despite same initial pressure
Venous leg edema & ulcers
- Improved venous return (high static stiffness index)
- Effective edema reduction
- Reduced pain
- Fast ulcer healing rate, prevention of ulcer recurrence
- Improved skin integrity & density
- More effective than bandages in reducing edema & healing ulcers
Lipedema / lipolymphedema
- Reduction in leg volume
- Tissue support
- Increased mobility, decrease in discomfort and pain (based on observational reports)
- Effective volume reduction in the management of post-operative edema after liposuction
Benefit 3: cost-effective
Direct cost savings – material saving:
- Wraps are washable & reusable
- Material costs for wraps versus bandages met after approximately one month = cost effective despite initial outlay
Indirect cost savings – time saving:
- Self-application: fewer clinic visits, more time available for the clinician to perform manual lymph drainage & skin care
- Application/handling quick & easy to learn by clinicians & caregivers
Benefit 4: enhanced quality of life
- Increased comfort (low resting pressure) while being effective
- Improved gait, stability & mobility
- Nicer cosmetiv appearence and less bulky than bandages
- Normal clothes and shoes can be worn again
- Improved wound care
- Enhanced independence, confidence & satisfaction
- Improved psychosocial aspects
- Increased concordance & compliance
Wraps do not only improve the clinical outcome of lymphedema and CVI patients, but they also clearly increase their quality of life through autonomous handling and self-management while being comfortable, hygienic and cost-effective.
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(4) Damstra, R.J. and Partsch, H., 2013. Prospective, randomized, controlled trial comparing the effectiveness of adjustable compression Velcro wraps versus inelastic multicomponent compression bandages in the initial treatment of leg lymphedema. Journal of Vascular Surgery: Venous and Lymphatic Disorders, 1(1), pp.13-19.
(5) Ehmann, S., Whitaker, J.C., Hampton, S. and Collarte, A., 2016. Multinational, pilot audit of a Velcro adjustable compression wrap system for venous and lymphatic conditions. Journal of wound care, 25(9), pp.513-520.
(6) Everett, J., 2016. The use of pressure wraps in treating lymphoedema in care. Nursing and Residential Care, 18 (8).
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(8) Lee, N., 2018. An evaluation on the use of adjustable compression wrapping devices as an alternative to compression bandaging in lower leg wounds. Wounds International, 9(4), pp.12-19.
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(16) Partsch, H., 2019. Reliable self-application of short stretch leg compression: Pressure measurements under self-applied, adjustable compression wraps. Phlebology, 34(3), pp.208-213.
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(18) Williams, A., 2016. A review of the evidence for adjustable compression wrap devices. Journal of wound care, 25(5), pp.242-247.
(19) Wounds, U. K. Best practice guidelines: the management of lipoedema. London: Wounds UK, 2017.
(20) Schofield, A., 2019. ReadyWrap®: case studies in practice. British Journal of Community Nursing, 24(10), pp.24-31