BACKGROUND: We analyze the effects of graduated compression stoking (GCS) on walking capacity and oxygen saturation in intermittent claudication (IC) patients.
METHODS: Eighteen patients with IC performed the 6-minute walking test in 2 conditions in random order: GCS or placebo sock. Onset claudication distance and total walking distance were obtained. The calf muscle oxygen saturation was continuously monitored before, during, and after 6-minute walk test. Comparisons of the walking capacity and StO2 parameters between GCS and placebo conditions were analyzed by Wilcoxon rank-sum test.
RESULTS: The onset claudication distance (GCS: 120 ± 99 meters vs. placebo: 150 ± 126 meters; P = 0.798) and total walking distance (GCS: 330 ± 108 meters vs. placebo: 324 ± 60 meters; P = 0.130) were similar between conditions. There were no differences in StO2 parameters between conditions (P > 0.05).
CONCLUSIONS: GCS does not decrease walking performance and calf muscle oxygenation saturation during 6-minute walk test in patients with IC.