A Sequential Compression Device, or SCD Machine, combats the pooling of blood in the legs by gently squeezing the legs from the ankles up to the knee, from the ankles up to the thigh or from the foot up to the knee (depending on make, model, and sleeve choice). This gentle squeezing helps to take the place of walking or running and works to move the blood back towards the heart where it can refresh. SCD machines help eliminate problems like Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) associated with pooled blood by helping with circulation.
The SCD machine consists of:
a control unit
sleeves that fit around the calves or the calves and thighs
- a set of re-usable connector tubing
The control unit sends a signal to the sleeves which then gently, sequentially compress the legs starting in the ankle area and working up the legs. This compression encourages better circulation.
IMPORTANT: If you are interested in using an SCD machine, you need to speak with your doctor. A test is generally required to ensure you have no blood clots that may cause further medical complications. You must have a prescription to use an SCD machine.
Why should I use an SCD machine?
Do you spend a lot of time in bed?
Is your mobility limited?
If you answered yes to either of these questions or if you have swelling in your legs, a Sequential Compression Device (SCD) may help protect you from life threatening conditions.
When you walk or run, your circulatory system works well. Blood pumps back towards your heart with each step that you take. When you spend a great deal of time seated or in bed, your body's natural ability to push blood back towards the heart slows way down. This slow down causes blood to begin to pool in the legs.
Why is it dangerous to have blood pool in the legs?
Blood needs a constant refresher. Each time it heads to the heart and lungs, it picks up oxygen and other nutrients and delivers them to the body. When it can't return and refresh, it becomes stagnant and the blood cells eventually die. As this dead or stagnant blood pools in the legs it can:
- break down the walls of the veins and begin to seep out into other areas of the legs
- become a blood clot (DVT)
- lead to venous stasis ulcers
- lead to amputation in severe cases
Still have questions? A Patient Care Representative is available to discuss your concerns and answer your questions. Please call us at 1 (877) 301-4276.