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Does Medicare Cover Compression Stockings


Medicare only provides coverage for compression socks for specific health reasons. People can wear socks and stockings for many reasons, including comfort, rehabilitation, and sports-related wear. Some medical conditions may require the use of special compression stockings. In this case, Medicare may consider the compression stockings a form of a wound dressing. 

Are Compression Socks Covered by Medicare?

Compression socks used for medical reasons have different pressure levels that are measured by mm/Hg. Lower compression stockings feel snug and are great for you while you’re up and about on your feet. Higher compression stockings are firmer and are for DVT patients. You can obtain a prescription from your doctor, but you’ll have to pay out of pocket for the socks. Medicare doesn’t provide coverage for compression socks that treat varicose veins, circulation issues or prevent ulcers.

Does Medicare Cover TED Compression Socks?

Thrombo-Embolic-Deterrent (TED) means the prevention of blood clots. TED socks are used by people who are bed-ridden or have recently undergone a surgical procedure and prevent blood clotting. TED socks help to provide compression as if the patient were walking. Medicare coverage extends to graduated compression stockings that treat open venous ulcers.

Does Medicare Cover Lymphedema Compression Stockings?

Compression socks can improve the draining of the lymph in ankles and feet, vastly improving the condition of Lymphedema. Medicare doesn’t extend coverage to compression for lymphedema. However, those with an HMO or PPO Medicare Advantage plan may have access to additional coverage that includes over-the-counter benefits.

Does Medicare Cover Diabetic Compression Socks?

People with diabetes have a chance of developing diabetic foot ulcers. Graduated compression socks can place pressure on the foot while it puts less stress on the legs. Relieving pressure on the foot helps to maintain circulation to the feet, which can cause swelling. While compression socks can be super beneficial, they don’t have coverage, even with a prescription. Those with diabetes in need of compression socks should consider online shopping for the best deal. Sometimes, you can even find a bargain by buying in bulk.

Will Medicare Cover Pneumatic Compression Devices?

While Medicare usually doesn’t cover compression socks, they do cover pneumatic compression devices. Although socks help with ailments, the socks aren’t enough to constitute coverage.

FAQs

Do I need a prescription for my compression socks?
For patients wanting socks that are right off the shelf and ready to wear, they don’t need a prescription to obtain. However, it’s best to check with Medicare before purchasing to determine if an order is necessary for the specific socks you’re needing. Socks with a higher compression typically may need a prescription if obtaining from a pharmacy.
Does Medicare pay for leg compression pumps?
Pneumatic compressions devices (otherwise known as Lymphedema or leg compression pumps) can be covered through Medicare if the patient has Lymphedema. Lymphedema is a condition in which the tissues in the affected limb swell because of excessive fluid.
Does Medicare cover compression stockings for varicose veins?
Medicare covers the costs of gradient compression stockings when below the knee with compression more significant than 30 mmHg and less than 50 mmHg. However, Medicare won’t cover socks used for varicose veins, ulcers, or circulation problems.
I have neuropathy in legs and the compression socks help a lot. Will Medicare cover them?
If your doctor says compression socks are medically necessary for neuropathy, then Medicare will cover it. It’s best to discuss your options with your doctor. They will know the codes to use when submitting the claim.

How to Get Help with Medicare Coverage for Compression Socks

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Lindsay Malzone

Lindsay Malzone is the Medicare expert for MedicareFAQ. She has been working in the Medicare industry since 2017. She is featured in many publications as well as writes regularly for other expert columns regarding Medicare. You can also find her over on our Medicare Channel on YouTube as well as contributing to our Medicare Community on Facebook.

3 thoughts on “Does Medicare Cover Compression Stockings

  1. I wish medicare would consider covering compression garments for lymphedema. In my case I can’t use off the rack garments and it cost a great deal to purchase the special made ones. We pay for medicare plus plan F supplement and I really feel these much needed medical items should be covered. Please review and reconsider. Thank you

  2. I work at at DME company that bills compression garments (a6545, A6531 etc). It was mentioned to us last year that Medicare may be changing the way stockings were priced and distributed. We were told that they may no longer be sold in pairs and that we had to repackage them? Is this something you are aware of and can help me with?

    1. Hi Christine! Thank you so much for your question. Since this change is relatively new, it’s hard to provide a good answer for you. I reached out to one of my contacts in the Durable Medical Equipment space and they suggested that you reach out directly to Medicare to get the answer to your question. I’m sorry we couldn’t be more helpful!

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