Compression therapy at night
Lymphedema is a condition that marches on throughout the day as well as the night. During the day when we are upright and ambulatory, an aggressive compression garment is necessary to fight the additional effects of gravity. This dictates the use of traditional elastic compression garments or adjustable compression wraps that have the power to maintain the limb size. But at night, when at rest the effects of gravity are significantly reduced. This allows for alternative products to be used that are not as aggressive allowing patients to relax and sleep better while still maintaining their treatment.
These alternative products are typically foam-based sleeves that are easy to slip on. The foam creates an irregular surface on the skin and the sleeve is sewn into patterned channels. The sleeve delivers a low level of compression creating a massaging effect on the limb that channels fluid back to the nodes at the trunk of the body. Many sleeves come with additional compression layers that can be applied over the foam sleeve for even greater compression levels if needed.
Patients find these padded compression products to be a supplement or alternative to self-bandaging that can be difficult and time-consuming. These benefits together with a better night’s sleep have made this a rapidly growing segment in the lymphedema treatment world. Always consult your healthcare provider to determine if foam-based products are right for you.