A few years back I had surgery, and when I was back in my room afterward and finally woke up from the sedation, I recall that my lower legs were in this boot-type device that was massaging and kneading my legs, ostensibly to avoid any risk of blood clots.
What are these devices, what are they actually called and how do they work?
I think what you’re referring to is usually called a sequential extremity device. Comprising two boot-like sleeves and a programmed air pump, the device uses pressure to force venous blood and/or excess interstitial fluid out of the lower legs, and, hopefully, back into circulation.
Each sleeve contains three chambers, which are inflated and deflated in a sequence that sweeps up the lower leg. This prevents blood from pooling in the lower legs or feet, hence preventing blood clots.
My mother had this for a while. Every evening she’d go upstairs to have her legs squeezed for an hour or so. I remember my dad had to help her into them and then she’d signal with a set of low-power walkie-talkies to my dad downstairs to go help her out of them.
I would like to have a portable unit to wear during military funerals and other veteran duties that require standing for long periods of time. And today 10 min is feeling like a long time to stand without moving:o