When bandages are described as long- and short-stretch, this refers to the bandage’s ability to stretch. Thus long-stretch bandages will have high elasticity and short-stretch bandages low elasticity. This is not to be confused with high compression and low compression; as we have seen in the two previous posts, elasticity and compression are not the same thing, therefore one does not imply the other.
As we mentioned, bandages can be classified according to their elasticity, either elastic or inelastic, and within the elastic category there are short-stretch and long-stretch bandages.
Classification into short-stretch and long-stretch
Although there are different opinions as to when a bandage is short-stretch and when it becomes long-traction, as a rule of thumb short stretch bandages are all those with an elasticity of between 10% and 90%-100%.
A. Inelastic bandages: No extensibility or no stretch at all (<10% extensibility)
B. Short-stretch elastic bandages (<100% extensibility)
C. Long-stretch elastic bandages (>100% extensibility)
|No stretch (Rigid)||Short stretch|
|Stretch (%)||>10%||Between 10% and 100%||<100%|
Figura 6.1 Categorías de material de compresión (Normativa Vendajes DIN 61632)
Some examples of these bandages would be:
Vendari TRACOR (Calvo Izquierdo S.L.)
Normally these bandages are made primarily of cotton. They can also be cohesive, thus eliminating the need for a clip at the end of the bandage or some kind of fastening to maintain its position.
- Long-stretch or high-elasticity bandages:
On the other hand, long-stretch bandages are those that have an elasticity greater than 100%. Usually we find elasticities between 140% and 180%, although they can even reach 300% in some cases.
Some examples of these bandages are:
Elodur Forte (BSN)
Dauerbinde K (L&R)
Vendari PRESIOFIX (Calvo Izquierdo S.L.)
These bandages are normally made up of several types of yarns, at least one of which is extremely elastic, so that they allow elasticities of around 140%. If these yarns are natural, the elastic will likely be natural rubber; if they are synthetic, the elastic material will be elastane, polyamide or PBT.
Relationship between short/long stretch and compression in bandages
Finally, although the compression and the elasticity or stretch of the bandage have nothing to do with each other, it is true that they do have a certain relationship. Accordingly, a short-stretch bandage will exert one compressive effect on the patient, while a long-stretch bandage will have a different type of compressive effect.
Without going into too much depth, as we will delve more deeply into this in future blog posts, short-stretch bandages, as they have less elasticity, work more when the patient is moving, and do not compress as much when the patient is at rest. On the other hand, long-stretch bandages, being more elastic and tending to recover their original size, exert some compression when the patient is at rest, i.e., they are more effective when the patient is immobile than when he or she is walking around.
Produced by the Technical Department of Calvo Izquierdo S.L.
with the collaboration of Carmen Alba Moratilla
- Bandage regulations DIN 61632