In a newly released study, a meta-analysis was done on the data of a large number of other studies to see whether the use of intermittent pneumatic compression devices placed on the legs of a hospitalized patient will prevent deep vein thrombosis. Previously, there was some level of disagreement about whether they actually worked even though the general consensus has been that they do prevent the development of blood clots. This has led to widespread use of these devices - which squeeze the legs periodically in order to keep the blood moving - in hospitals everywhere.  The trouble has been that when they were not used in patients that needed them clots would form and the patient would suffer injury - but the doctors would then claim "well, there really isn't proof that they actually work so you can't bring a medical malpractice lawsuit for your medical bills and other costs that resulted from the clots."  Well, this new study shows that they do work and they work well.  They work even better when used with blood thinning medication, too. The abstract is available here.

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