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Breakthrough 3M compression system improves patient comfort and mobility in lymphoedema therapy

15 September 2011

 A new compression bandaging system is giving people undergoing intensive lymphoedema treatment a better quality of life. The Coban 2 compression system, from diversified technology company 3M, offers patients improved mobility and comfort compared with traditional, heavy lymphoedema bandaging.

Lymphoedema, is a chronic, debilitating condition impacting over 1.3 million patients in the UK.  Sufferers experience severe swelling of parts of the body, inducing a wide range of physical and psychosocial difficulties, such as poor body image, depression, embarrassment, impaired mobility and pain1.

With a clinically proven wear time of up to four days1, the Coban 2 system requires less frequent application, making the system more convenient for patients and less labour intensive for clinicians compared with traditional bandaging.

The system comprises two thin layers - an inner foam layer and a cohesive outer layer - which bond together to form a lightweight, low profile bandage that conforms to the limb and provides the necessary compression to effectively reduce oedema.  Without the bulk, patients can wear normal clothing and footwear and have the functional mobility to carry out everyday tasks, such as walking upstairs and using a key board.  

“Cumulative results from research studies support that the Coban 2 compression system is clinically effective.  Its application two times per week has been demonstrated to reduce limb volume, help normalise and reshape distorted limbs, reducing the symptoms of lymphoedema” said Christine Moffatt CBE PhD, Lead Researcher, Derby Hospitals and Honorary Professor in Nursing & Health Care, Glasgow University.

The requirement for twice weekly, rather than daily, application of the Coban 2 system gives patients fewer interruptions to their daily life and can reduce the overall cost of care resulting from fewer clinic visits required to achieve oedema reduction.2

Studies also show that because the Coban 2 system stays in place and is comfortable1, patients are more likely to keep the bandages on improving the potential for more effective therapy.

Patient Sue, who has lymphoedema in her arm following breast cancer treatment, says: “I am delighted with the low profile bandaging, which is hardly noticeable. It allows me to use my fingers, so I can still type and enjoy cooking with the confidence that I have a safe grip.  It’s much more comfortable to wear, not slippy, nor itchy…it has made a real difference.”

The Coban 2 compression system is latex-free, hypoallergenic and non-irritating to skin.3 As it is single–use, the time and expense of washing and re-rolling bandages and the risk of contamination from re-use are eliminated.

3M offers free training and product application support for healthcare practitioners, including training in innovative new application techniques for experienced lymphoedema practitioners.  


For more information visit www.3m.co.uk/healthcare

To view uplifting patient case studies  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xVlVZSwfdIo


1.Moffatt CJ, Franks P, (2011) A randomised trial to compare the efficacy and safety of the 3M™ Coban™ 2 Compression System for Lymphoedema against Comprilan® Short-Stretch Bandage Compression Therapy. British Journal of Dermatology, publication pending.

2. UK Health Economics Model, 3M data on file.

3. 3M data on file.

For product enquiries
Angela Mears, 3M
Tel 01509 613467
Email: ukcobantraining@mmm.com

For press enquiries
Julie Owen, 3M
Tel 01509 613372
Email: jowen1@mmm.com

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