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Stroke victims 'not helped' by surgical socks

Stroke victims 'not helped' by surgical socks
2nd June 2009

Surgical stockings, which have long been used as a way to reduce the chance of blood clots in stroke patients, are an ineffective way of treating the issue, according to new research.

The study, which looked at 2,500 stroke patients in Italy, Australia and the UK, found them to have no effect on the treatment of deep vein thrombosis, which results in blood clots heading to the heart or lungs.

By dropping stockings from the NHS, around £7 million and 320,000 hours of nursing could be saved, it was estimated.

Commenting on the breakthrough, Martin Dennis, the professor of stroke medicine at the University of Edinburgh, said: "The national guidelines need to be revised and we need further research to establish effective treatments for these patients.

"Abandoning this ineffective and sometimes uncomfortable treatment will free up valuable resources in our health services."

The Stroke Association also welcomed the research, agreeing that the practice be discontinued.

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