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Sdlrodeo

Compression socks: just silly looking or do they help?

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Yes, you would have to design a study with identically looking and feeling socks with and without compression etc, but you'd first have to prove that they are beneficial at all to begin with.

Call my placebo statement an opinion based on prescribing compression socks and stockings for  over a decade of cardiovascular medicine practice. 

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18 hours ago, YVK said:

 

It was a placebo effect. External compression, or venous compression socks, are used to help with venous insufficiency which manifests in leg swelling. For any given degree of venous dysfunction it will be more easily brought out in tall people, overweight people, people with some cardiac and pulmonary problems, or people who are on their feet and upright for extended periods of time. If your veins are working normally, you don't get any additional physiologic benefit. If your veins are not coping, your benefit would be less swelling. Some folks get pain with swelling so they may help with that too. That's about it. 

The only benefit that I could perceive wearing them was keeping my legs warmer, which may help with performance under some circumstances. 

Note that with the gravity it is normal for feet to be slightly swollen by the end of the day if you had been upright. Some quote 10% shoe size increase. The night-out shoes are best to be tried on before buying in the evening.

 

The negative side of those is that if you overdo the degree of compression and actually worsen the venous return from superficial veins. In medical practice we have different compression pressures available and we try to gestimate venous pressure in each patient and go just above that. 


(Also with all due respect as you sound like you know what you’re talking about)

 

make no mistake I definitely felt ‘something’. I really think it was the cooling effects of the wicking performance fabric of the socks And possibly the little bit of tightness the socks provide. Sort of like the first time you ever put on a snug fitting under armor shirt. The feeling was almost like a topical heat rub on my legs which felt energizing. There was definitely a physical sensation. I don’t know that it really helped anything in the same way that a topical cream doesn’t really do anything. 

Edited by Sdlrodeo

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Yes, you would have to design a study with identically looking and feeling socks with and without compression etc, but you'd first have to prove that they are beneficial at all to begin with.

Call my placebo statement an opinion based on prescribing compression socks and stockings for  over a decade of cardiovascular medicine practice. 

I respect your medical experiences. I wouldn’t have any issue if you didn’t mention placebo effect. Again, by definition, placebo effects means there is a beneficial effect. I also don’t think you can use a pair of socks that offers no compression as a placebo as anyone who wears it can tell it’s not a real one.

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Placebo effects, by definition, means there is a positive outcome from an intervention that doesn't have an active component designed to elicit such outcome. It doesn't  mean there is a physiologic beneficial effect. A classic example would be an anti-inflammatory pain med placebo when patients report improvement in pain but when objective markers of inflammation are checked, nothing is changed. 

Anyway, we've taken this thread on a tangent enough so I'll stop. Thanks for the discussion.

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