Flat and Round knitted garments are chosen by medical professionals, or compression specialists based on the best therapeutic path suited for the client, including factors such as age, mobility, size and shape of the limb, skin or wound related issues and cost.
Garments can be off the shelf or made to measure (custom made) depending on the circumstances, for example; a garment may be custom made when the limb does not fit comfortably within the parameters of an off the shelf size, limb shape does not allow an ideal fit for the limb, certain cases such as lymphoedema or lipoedema where the higher fabric stiffness of the custom garment is required. Should a client need a custom garment, additional time for measuring and ordering to receive the garment should be noted.
Flat knit garments are garments that have been manufactured as a sheet and sewn together to create a longitudinal seam. The knit is usually coarser with a high working pressure. Due to fabric stiffness and sometimes micro massaging weave, Flat knits are better to manage conditions such as lymphoedema and lipoedema as it provides optimal compression and maximum containment. Due to these features and the demand required of this fabric type majority of flat knit garments are custom made.
Round knit garments are made by a machine that knits the fabric in a continuous tube, usually lighter and they do not feature any seams. Round knitted garments have more elasticity in comparison to flat knits and are largely used for phlebology/vascular treatments and occasionally used in some mild/early stages of lymphoedema and lipoedema. Most round knit garments are available off the shelf but can be custom made when required.
It is always recommended to speak with a medical professional about what garment type is right for you, every situation is different and can influence what fabric type or type of garment you are supplied.