Anti-embolism stockings, sometimes known as Teds®, are intended for non-ambulatory patients, those confined to a bed. It is common for physicians to prescribe these stockings for patients to prevent thrombosis (coagulation) and stimulate blood flow. They are white and have an opening under the foot. They have a compression range from 8-18mmHg. While suitable for bed-ridden patients, it is not recommended these garments are used for travel or daily physical activities.
Medical grade compression stockings are therapeutic and designed for people who are mobile. They work with a graduated effect, providing 100% of the compression at the distal point being the ankle, and gradually decreasing compression up the leg. They are manufactured in compression ranges:
Light/Support range 15-20mmHg, Low compression 18-21mmHg (class one), moderate compression 23-32mmHg (class two) and strong compression 34-46+mmHg (class three). Graduated compression stockings are designed for specific medical indications.
Stockings from 18-21mmHg and below are available over the counter (OTC), whilst other compression levels require a medical prescription.
NB: mmHg stands for millimetres of mercury; this is the measurement used to measure compression hosiery.