In this large multi-center randomized controlled trial, over 2500 patients with acute stroke were randomized to thigh -high graduated compression stockings (GCS) or usual care. There was no significant difference in the risk of DVT (10% in GCS and 10.5% in usual care), but skin issues (breaks, ulcers, blisters, and necrosis) was much more common in the GCS group (5%) compared to usual care (1%). This study does not support the use of GCS in acute stroke patients, as there is no evidence of benefit, and some evidence of harm (abstract).
Dr. Scheurer is a clinical hospitalist and the Medical Director of Quality and Safety at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, South Carolina, and is Assistant Professor of Medicine. She is a graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Medicine, completed her residency at Duke University, and completed her Masters in Clinical Research at the Medical University of South Carolina. She also serves as the Web Editor and Physician Advisor for the Society of Hospital Medicine.