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Br J Nurs. 2006 Mar 9-22;15(5):263-70.

What information patients require on graduated compression stockings.

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East Kent Hospitals NHS Trust (EKHT).


Graduated compression stockings are used prophylactically on a variety of patients within acute hospitals. Anecdotal evidence suggests patients have a limited understanding of this treatment. The aim of this qualitative study was to explore patients' experiences of compression stockings and to ascertain perceptions of their use. Information was gathered using telephone interviews from a sample of 12 adults who had been patients within the past 2 months, and who had worn compression stockings for more than 48 hours. The results showed that patients received little or no information from healthcare staff regarding compression stockings, but that they did have knowledge from other sources, such as long-haul flight advice. This raises issues of informed consent and patient empowerment and highlights the need for both verbal and written information. The information gained informed a patient information leaflet, which was developed in partnership with a patient focus group.

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