Horses Wear Compression Bandages Too!

 

equicrown horse bandages by juzo

There are many reasons to wear compression garments for humans and animals alike. Did you know that horses can wear medical compression bandages to stimulate the lymphatic flow in their legs? This helps to remove lymph fluid and toxins while managing swelling. Yes, after a long day of standing or running around, even horses get tired and swell up like the rest of us!

Interestingly enough, horses have about 8,000 lymph nodes, which is the most out of any mammal. This makes them much more prone to developing moderate to severe swelling, or lymphedema. In comparison, there are about 500-700 lymph nodes in humans, which are much larger than the lymph nodes in a horse.

Luckily there’s a solution. Juzo manufactures medical compression bandages that are specifically designed for horses to support and stimulate lymph flow. However, horses can benefit from wearing compression bandages for more than just swelling. Compression garments are recommended for anyone (humans and animals) standing for long periods of time to help increase circulation, to prevent and relieve swelling or fatigue. Since horses are almost always standing, compression can also be used as a preventative method to keep your horse in the best shape possible. Here’s how EquiCrown bandages can benefit your horse:

EquiCrown by Juzo Benefits for Horses

Juzo’s EquiCrown bandages provide precisely-defined pressure to relieve swelling in the horses’s legs. These flat-knit compression bandages are soft, durable and stretchy as to not interfere with performance. EquiCrown bandages are designed to promote circulation, treat wounds and scars, prevent and relieve swelling, and for managing injuries. These breathable bandages are even safe to machine wash and dry! EquiCrown compression bandages are available in ready-to-wear and custom sizes to fit mild to severe swelling. Here’s how it works:

equicrown horse bandages - how it works

Still have questions about how these innovative bandages work? Comment below!

 

Treating a Venous Leg Ulcer: Compression Hosiery vs Compression Bandages

A venous stasis ulcer is an open sore on your lower leg caused by poor circulation or venous insufficiency.  Venous ulcers are usually treated with compression, either bandaging or compression stockings, and on average take about 3 months to heal.  They often recur, and once healed, compression stockings should be worn daily to prevent a recurrence.

ulcer care stocking and bandagingAs reported in The Lancet, a clinical study was recently completed comparing the effectiveness and cost effectiveness of four layer bandaging and a two part ulcer care stocking.   Going into the study, it was assumed that bandaging was the most effective form of treatment, but there are drawbacks to this method.  Bandages are difficult for a patient to apply, they can slip, and due to their bulky nature, reduce ankle and leg mobility.  This in turn can have a negative impact on a patients quality of life.

Ulcer care compression stockings consist of two stockings.  A lower compression liner, and a higher compression outer stocking.  Together they deliver a compression of 40mmHg at the ankle.  This system is easier to apply, fits in most shoes, and over the course of treatment is less expensive.

The study conducted in England and Northern Ireland, randomly assigned 457 participants into two groups: 230 to two-layer hosiery, and 227 to the four-layer bandaging.  The results for healing were almost identical, 99 days for the hosiery group and 98 days for the bandage group.  The cost for treating the hosiery group was lower by about $480 over the course of a year.  The increased cost for the bandaging group was mainly due to more frequent nursing consultations.

What was unexpected, were the number of participants in the hosiery group that switched to another form of treatment.  It was almost 10% higher than the participants in the bandaging group.  Going into the study it was assumed that stockings would be more comfortable and easier to apply, and therefore the preferred treatment.  This wasn’t the case with some of the older participants.

Although not officially part of the study, the researchers did find a lower recurrence of ulcers in the hosiery group.  It was postulated that these participants would be more likely to wear stockings for maintenance after their ulcer healed, and the evidence supports this theory.

Pete@BrightLife Direct
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Does Medicare cover compression garments?

This is a question that we are frequently asked.  The short answer is “No”.  However, there is legislation currently before congress that would direct Medicare to cover compression garments for the treatment of lymphedema.

There is one exception in the current Medicare policy.  Coverage may be provided if you are being treated by a doctor for a venous statis ulcer on your leg and have a prescription from your Doctor for compression stockings and liners for this condition. BrightLife Direct sells several ulcer care stockings including the Jobst UlcerCare with Zipper and Mediven Dual Layer Stocking System.  Here’s the nitty gritty from Medicare:

The beneficiary must have an open venous stasis ulcer that has been treated by a physician or other healthcare professional requiring medically necessary debridement.  The gradient stocking must be proven to deliver compression greater than 30 mm Hg. and less than 50 mmHg.  When a covered gradient compression stocking is provided to a patient with an open venous stasis ulcer, the modifier AW (item furnished in conjunction with a surgical dressing) must be appended or the claim will be denied as a non-covered service.  Gradient compression stockings are non-covered for the following conditions:
Venous insufficiency without stasis ulcers
Prevention of stasis ulcers

The Lymphedema Diagnosis and Therapy Cost Saving Act of 2010 (HR4662) was introduced in the House of Representatives by North Carolina Congressman Larry Kissell. This is a bi-partisan effort and currently has 58 co-sponsors in the House.  This bill would establish a new benefit category to cover the compression bandages, compression garments and compression devices used in the treatment of lymphedema.  The Medicare Evidence Development Coverage Advisory Committee (MEDCAC) concluded at their meeting last November that existing evidence gives reasonable confidence that use of compression bandage systems and compression garments improve the health of lymphedema patients.

To read a summary or a the entire bill click here.

You can help get this bill passed by emailing or phoning your congressperson.

Pete@BrightLife Direct
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