Compression Stocking Tip #2: Where to Buy Compression Stockings

11 Jan

Where do you buy compression stockings?  Not at the mall.  And not at your local drug store either.  Sure, just about every CVS and Rite Aid pharmacy carry compression garments of some kind, but the support hose offered there is the compression equivalent of a gentle breeze caressing your leg.  Lymphedema legs require sustained, gale force support.

BONUS TIP: Stocking dealers want your business and may be flexible on price. It doesn’t hurt to ask. I’ve done it successfully. When I found a new dealer I wanted to switch to, but their prices were higher than my old dealer, I told them about the lower price I was getting. They honored the lower price without even asking to see a sales receipt.

BONUS TIP: Stocking dealers want your business and may be flexible on price. It doesn’t hurt to ask. I’ve done it with success. My current dealer honored the lower price of my previous dealer without even asking to see a sales receipt.

Only a handful of companies manufacture stockings globally that support our limbs with enough pressure to be effective.  I have tried just about all of the major brands, including Juzo, Jobst, Sigvaris, Solidea, Medi and Therafirm.  Allegro and Solaris are the only major brands I have yet to try.

However (as an industry norm), these stockings cannot be purchased directly from these manufacturers – only from authorized dealers.

While the term “dealer” may conjure images of shady characters in dark alleys peddling illicit product in ziploc baggies, compression stocking dealers range from mom-and-pop retail pharmacies to online-only providers.

Every manufacturer’s website has a dealer locator function to help you find the store nearest you.

Your insurance company may dictate which supplier you choose (if you’re lucky enough to have stockings covered), so give them a call as well.

  • Measuring Tape

    BONUS TIP: Keep a record of your measurements. Take them yourself or have them taken by a trained professional at least once a year to make sure you are still wearing the correct size stocking. Body size fluctuates over time for a variety of reasons (whether we like it or not) and not just due to lymphedema.

    First, go in person. If you are buying your first pair, it’s a good idea to visit a dealer in person to make sure you are measured properly by a trained professional and receive the proper size stocking.  They should be able to advise you on the various styles of stockings available that serve your specific lymphedema condition.

  • Then, shop online. Once you are comfortable with your size and style preferences, branch out to online dealers simply by typing “compression stockings” or similar terms into your search engine.  Online providers often have better prices than retail medical supply stores.  Plus, nothing beats the convenience of shopping from your home and having the stockings show up on your doorstep, while your legs are comfortably elevated.

(Don’t miss the Bonus Tips in the sidebar.)

Upcoming….Compression Stocking Tip #3: How to Choose a Compression Stocking Dealer.  Sign up for email alerts and follow Lymphedema Diary on Facebook and Twitter, so you don’t miss any tips.  Please comment and share your own compression stocking tips in the comments section.

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