SMTL Dressings Datacard

Product Name: Tensopress
Classification Name: Bandage Compression (V.E.C. High Compression Bandage DT)
Manufacturer: Smith & Nephew Healthcare Limited


Tensopress has been classified as a Type 3c `High Compression Bandage'. It consists of a warp-knitted bandage composed of cotton and viscose, incorporating elastomeric threads made from polyurethane. A yellow line runs up the centre of the bandage. The fabric is soft and light, and possesses a degree of lateral extensibility that makes the product very conformable and easy to apply. Tensopress is highly elastic, by virtue of the elastomeric threads, which also give it considerable `power'. If required, Tensopress may be washed repeatedly without affecting its performance significantly.


Tensopress is a powerful compression bandage that may be used to apply a range of sub-bandage pressures. It is primarily intended for the application of controlled levels of pressure in the treatment of venous ulcers and other conditions where compression therapy is required, such as sclerotherapy. Because the bandage has the ability to `follow in', or maintain compression on limbs as they decrease in circumference, it can be used to reduce existing gross oedema, unlike products made from cotton or lightweight nylon fabrics.


As with all compression bandages, Tensopress should not be applied to patients who have marked ischaemia or impaired arterial blood supply. The inappropriate use of the bandage in these situations could have very serious consequences.

Method of use

When using Tensopress, some workers first apply a layer of padding to offer protection to bony prominences such as the tibial crest, the dorsum of the foot and the malleolus. During application, the leg should be positioned with the knee flexed and the foot at right angles. With the bulk roll facing upwards, a single turn should be made around the ankle and down over the top of the foot and around the base of the toes.

A second turn is then made over the top of the foot and down to cover the heel. After making a further turn around the ankle, the application is completed with a simple spiral up the leg, using the yellow line in the centre of the bandage as a guide for the overlap. Once in place, the bandage may be fastened with clips, tapes, or pins, as appropriate. Care should be taken to ensure that the bandage does not cause a tourniquet effect at the knee, and the operator should ensure that a pressure gradient exists beneath the bandage, with the highest levels of pressure at the ankle. If required, Tensopress may be used in conjunction with a paste bandage.

Frequency of Change

Provided the bandage has been correctly applied and does not become displaced, it will continue to apply the desired levels of compression over an extended period. However, it is sometimes recommended that high performance products such as Tensopress should be removed at night and reapplied before the patient gets out of bed in the morning.


Because of the power inherent in Tensopress and its ability to maintain high levels of compression over extended periods, care must be taken to ensure that the bandage is not applied with excessive tension. It is also important to ensure that it is applied with no more than a 50% overlap, to do otherwise will result in the formation of excessive pressure which in turn may lead to areas of tissue damage.


Tensopress is presented individually boxed.


7.5 cm 3 m*

10.0 cm 3 m*

*available on Drug Tariff


1. Thomas S, et al., Compression therapy in an obese patient, J. Wound Care, 1992, \fB1, 19-20.

Revision Details

Revision AuthorDr S. Thomas
Revision No 1.3
Revision date1997/12/16

This datacard has been prepared from data provided by the manufacturer and/or from published literature.

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Last Modified: Thursday, 28-Mar-2002 10:23:35 GMT