Is It Necessary to Wear Jobst Stocking After Surgery to Prevent Blood Clots?

Doctor Answers 17

There are 2 errors in your question--"necessary" and "prevent."

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Jobst compression stockings (or other brands) are used to decrease venous blood congestion or pooling while a patient is immobile on the operating table, in order to reduce blood clot formation. Sequential compression devices actively "pump" the blood in your lower extremities, and have been shown by numerous studies to be an even better way to decrease blood clots after surgery. Compression stockings are simply one way to decrease risks (better than doing nothing), but "necessary?" No. Neither is it "necessary" for your surgeon to be well-rested and attentive--s/he has probably done this operation hundreds of times and can probably do it blindfolded. Of course, neither is "right" nor proper.

But the second word that I take issue with is "prevent." Use of antibiotics won't "prevent" infection, they only reduce the risk of an infection. Similarly, use of compression stockings, or even sequential active compression devices, or even injectable blood thinners do not "prevent" blood clots, they only reduce the risk!

But why would you fail to do anything that might enhance your safety, reduce your risks, or potentially save your life?

If you are asking because your surgeon didn't mention this, perhaps it's because it's already a routine where your surgeon operates and every patient automatically gets them, just as in our office surgical facility (we also use active sequential compression devices for every case, not just certain ones).

If there is any question, please ask at the time of surgery or beforehand. Best wishes and good luck! Dr. Tholen

Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 263 reviews

Preventing Blood Clots After Surgery

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Jobst stockings are a great idea to reduce your risk of developing a DVT after surgery. Your should follow your surgeons post operative instructions but early ambulation can also reduce your risk of DVT/PE.

Jobst Stockings after surgery

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This is a great way to reduce the risk of surgery!  Follow your surgeon's instructions for a rapid recovery.  Best wishes!

Robert E. Zaworski, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 61 reviews

Avoiding post operative complications following cosmetic surgery

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As a plastic surgeon we always try to minimize the risk for our patients.  There are many things that can be done to reduce the risk of a deep vein thrombosis or a pulmonary embolism.  Wearing post operative TED hose or surgical stockings is only one element of the prophylactic treatment to avoid blood clots following surgery.  Patients are encouraged to stay well hydrated, be off of birth control pills or hormones, avoid long trips for two weeks prior to surgery and for two weeks after surgery, to avoid keeping the knees bent at a 90 degree angle for extended periods of time, frequent ambulation and in addition to these precautions some patients will be placed on blood thinning medications.  There are many risk factors for the development of blood clots and during your consultation and exam these will be reviewed and analysed to help you understand  your personal risk level.   Safety is the number one goal.  

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Jobst Stockings after surgery?

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The most feared complication from tummy tuck surgery is blood clots in the legs as they can result in pulmonary complications.  The best way to prevent this is walking around.  Using compression certainly is not a bad idea.  I have my patients wear just the compression hose they recieve during surgery (less compression than jobst) for 48 hours after surgery.  Getting out of bed and walking around the house every hour while awake is the best preventative measure though.

Best Wishes,

Pablo Prichard, MD

Pablo Prichard, MD
Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

They help a little

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The stockings minimize risk of clots to a small degree.  It is more important to get up and walk quickly and frequently after surgery.

Evan Sorokin, MD
Cherry Hill Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 77 reviews

Compression stockings after Surgery

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Each doctor has their own recommendations on when and how long to wear compression stockings after surgery. Generally the longer the surgery the more likely it is that your doctor will require that you wear the stockings. They do help lower the risk of blood clots as that is one of the risks that is associated with any surgery.

Leo Lapuerta, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 48 reviews

Cosmetic surgery is an Art and a Science

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Blood clots are a risk for any surgery especially if general anesthesia is used. I would take the recommendations of your surgeon and not worry about the risks. The stocking will likely help you after surgery.  Dr Thomas Narsete  Austin, Tx

DVT risk reduction

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Blood clots post op are an inherent risk.  There are multiple modalities for risk reduction including ambulation, blood thinners, and compressive stockings. Prevention is key. Follow your physician's prescribed post op protocol. Best wishes

Craig Harrison, MD, PA
Tyler Plastic Surgeon

Jobst stockings to prevent blood clots

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The stockings will minimize swelling in your legs after surgery, but the best thing you can do to prevent blood clots is to walk at least 500 steps a day after your surgery. The surgeries with the highest risk are tummy tucks, liposuction of multiple areas, or any surgery lasting more than 5-6 hours. 

Dana Goldberg, MD
Jupiter Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 41 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.