Lifestyle Legwear for Health, Medical, and Performance
'Economy class syndrome' guidelines issued News Staff

For the first time, long-distance travelers have been issued specific guidelines to help reduce the risk of developing the life-threatening blood clots associated with sitting for hours on end.

According to the American College of Chest Physicians, travelers taking flights longer than six hours would be well advised to follow some simple guidelines.

Among more than 500 new recommendations, developed by a panel of 87 physicians, are:

  • avoid wearing clothing that constricts the feet, legs or waist;
  • drink lots, but avoid alcohol and coffee;
  • engage in frequent calf muscle stretching;
  • get up and move about frequently;
  • in light of other risk factors -- which include active cancer, pregnancy, obesity and recent surgery -- consider wearing below-the-knee compression stockings.

Panel chair Jack Hirsh, of McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, says all travelers should heed the advice.

Compression stockings can cut blood clot risk: study

From CTV
Mon. May. 21 2001 8:43 AM ET

LONDON - Long-haul flights can lead to potentially serious blood clots but travelers can reduce the risk by wearing elastic compression stockings, experts said Friday.

Deep vein thrombosis (DVT), dubbed economy class syndrome because of the cramped conditions on planes, are blood clots that form in major blood vessels, usually in the leg.

The condition, which can be fatal if the clot dislodges and moves to the brain or lung, has caused concern among air passengers, particularly in Britain after a 28-year-old woman died last year after a flight from Australia.

It shows a very definite link between long-haul flying and the development of small thromboses (small clots). Although most of these thromboses may resolve, some could progress, he said.

The advantage of wearing elastic stockings is that it stops even tiny clots starting, Scurr explained in a telephone interview.

Most of the people were unaware of the clots which were not serious but two people were treated with blood thinners.

Scurr, whose research is published in The Lancet medical journal, recommends using the stockings which are sold in medical supply stores to avoid blood clots during long-haul travel.

Wrapping The World In Holofiber®

22 DECEMBER 2004

It is no surprise that to gain a strong foothold in the medical textiles sector and remain competitive multiple product applications must be created that appeal to doctors, patients and general consumers.

Holofiber®, touted as the world’s first body-responsive fiber, is one such product. Introduced last year after 10 years of development by Hologenix LLC, Charlotte — a joint venture company formed by Wellman Inc., Shrewsbury, N.J.; and Holofiber LLC, Los Angeles. Holofiber is a proprietary textile that has found applications in both the compressive garment and sportswear markets.

Holofiber’s polyester base features a permanent, proprietary, optically responsive active ingredient that transforms ambient light energy and energy emitted by the body into energy with a different wavelength that the body then can reabsorb. The body uses this reabsorbed energy in a biological process known as the Krebs cycle, which converts acetate into carbon dioxide and water, relaxing capillaries and releasing energy. This release leads to increased oxygen levels, accelerating muscle recovery and building strength — attributes that aid in relieving pain associated with blood circulation loss caused by hardening of the arteries in diabetes sufferers.

According to Robert Klein, inventor of Holofiber and Chairman of Holofiber LLC, wearing Holofiber products can help lessen this condition.

Sound a little hard to believe? A double-blind clinical study conducted by Hologenix early last year found there was “a statistically significant change in transcutaneous oxygen — or the oxygen delivery to the skin — in hands and feet, on subjects wearing Holofiber gloves and socks compared to those wearing comparable non-Holofiber gloves and socks.”

The study also concluded that the 8- to 10-percent increase found in the participants’ skin oxygenation could increase circulation enough to quicken wound-healing or eliminate ischemic leg pain often found in patients suffering from diabetes and vascular afflictions.

According to the company, Holofiber is not an applied additive or coating, but rather is a nontoxic, biologically safe material embedded in the fiber meaning it won’t wash or leach out of a fabric. This makes it extremely suitable for apparel.

The company has introduced Holofiber to the sportswear market, partnering with such companies as Canada-based Arriva — producer of Holofiber socks that target deep vein thrombosis, diabetes, sore and tired feet, circulatory impairment, neuropathy, early-onset varicose veins and injury recovery . Hologenix also has teamed with Wickers America Inc., Commack. N.Y., a manufacturer of Holofiber glove liners, boxers, socks and tights; Superfeet Femdale, Wash., a manufacturer of custom and trim-to-fit insoles; and Accumed Technologies, Buffalo, N.Y., a manufacturer of medical support wraps.

Athletes such as Olympic medalist tri-athlete Michellie Jones, and members of Team Holofiber a co-ed Canadian adventure racing team that participates in endurance competitions that include running, mountain climbing, biking and canoeing — have found that Holofiber apparel has made a difference in energy and performance levels.

“I train about three hours a day. but no matter how much training I do, it is no comparison to a five- day nonstop race,” said Lawrence Foster, captain of Team Holofiber. “It has always been a simple fact that you get sore and stiff if you stop and start intense physical exercise. In the recent Subaru Primal Quest [an endurance competition covering 400 miles in five to 10 days], our team would paddle 80 kilometers (km), run 40 km. then bike another 80 km, then stop for a two- to three-hour rest, sleep and then do it all over again.

“The one thing we did differently [in this race] was change into our Holofiber clothing during those resting periods.

When we woke up — no pain, no stiffness. We were ready to race again.

The socks we wore were even better. My feet swell almost a full size during a long race, but we used Holofiber socks from Arriva and had little swelling and no blisters,” Foster added.

Hologenix plans to develop many more applications for the responsive fiber. “In the next four or five years, Holofiber will be everywhere from medicine to fashion,” Klein said. “It will also go into seating — Holofiber makes seats much more comfortable.”

Members of Team Holofiber have worn shirts, socks and long underwear made with HoIofiber during competitions. Tights, leg and arm warmers, hats and bike jerseys are currently in production.