How to Apply Ace Bandages for Edema Control

Edema is most typically a swelling in the feet.
Edema is most typically a swelling in the feet. (Image: brandi666/

Edema is the condition where the body tissues swell up with fluids other than blood. This swelling can be simply due to a hot day or pregnancy related, but can be also be a sign of a more serious condition. It is important to have edema looked at and diagnosed by a doctor before any treatment. After seeing a doctor, ACE bandages offer a simple and effective to help control the swelling.

Starting just below the toes, roll the ACE bandage twice around to hold the starting position in place.

Apply slight pressure with the bandage against the skin by keeping it taught. Work the rolled bandage up the rest of the foot towards the ankle. As you roll the bandage on, each new wrap should cover 50 percent of the previous wrap, overlapping the bandage with each pass.

Avoid the heel. Leave the heel exposed, skipping over and continue wrapping around the ankle, working up the leg.

The bandage should run out about five inches above the ankle. Using the supplied clips, securely fasten the end of the ACE bandage.

Tips & Warnings

  • If the bandage runs longer, continuing farther up the leg is fine. The same technique can be applied to other bodily areas besides the feet, making sure to apply slight pressure with each wrap and overlapping each pass by 50 percent.
  • Be careful not to apply too much pressure with the bandage, you do not want to cut off blood circulation.

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