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Easy Steps to Using Tubular Bandages

We depend on bandages to help the healing process of wounds speed up, and in this article I will be talking about tubular bandages and how to use them.

How can I use tubular bandages?

Short Answer: Tubular bandages can be used in a variety of ways to help with compression to injured joints or muscles

  • It can be used to provide support for an injured muscle
  • The tubular bandage can act as a sling or secure a dressing
  • They are a comfortable solution for aching body limbs as well

Types of Tubular Bandages

Tubular bandages are elasticated tubes of fabric that are used as protection to various body parts. There are several types of tubular bandages available, which are:

  • Stockinette Tubular Bandages
  • Elastic Tubular Bandages
  • Tubular Compression Bandages
  • Cohesive Tubular Bandages

Let’s dive into these types of tubular bandages now.

Stockinette Tubular Bandages

These bandages are made from a cotton or polyester blend, and they are used as a liner under other bandages.

It provides additional support and padding for casts, too.

Elastic Tubular Bandages

These are the most commonly used type of tubular bandages, which are made from stretchable material such as cotton, nylon and polyester.

They are available in different sizes, and provide compression and support to joints and limbs.

Tubular Compression Bandages

Tubular compression bandages have been specifically designed for treating lymphedema, a condition where the lymphatic system is unable to properly drain fluid from the body.

The bandage provides graduated compression to the affected area, reducing swelling at the same time.

Cohesive Tubular Bandages

These bandages are made from a self-adhesive material that sticks to itself, but not to skin or hair.

It is used for compression and support, mostly for wrapping around limbs, toes and fingers.

It’s important to note that the type of tubular bandage needed will depend on the specific condition being treated and the body part requiring support or compression.

Consult with a healthcare professional to determine the appropriate type of bandage for your individual needs.

Tubular bandages: available sizes and uses of each

Tubular bandages can be used in a variety of settings, including at home, clinics and hospitals. One of the most crucial factors when selecting a tubular bandage is the size. They come in different sizes to accommodate various body parts - from fingers, toes, and larger limbs such as the abdomen.

If the bandage is too small, it may be too tight and restrict circulation, comfort and support. On the other hand, if it is too big it will not provide the adequate support or compression.

Tubular bandages are available in three main size categories:

  • Small Tubular Bandages (4.4 cm/5 cm) - These bandages are typically used for fingers, toes and other small body parts. They provide compression, secure dressings and protect wounds.
  • Medium Tubular Bandages (7 cm/9 cm) - These are often used for limbs, such as arms and legs. They help with supporting weak or injured joints and reduce swelling.
  • Large Tubular Bandages (10.8 cm) - These are used for the bigger body parts, such as the thigh or abdomen. It supports the abdomen, provides compression and helps with post-surgical recovery.

The circumference of the body part that’s being treated will need to be measured, in order to ensure that the correct size is chosen.

It’s important to choose the right size of tubular bandage for the body part being treated and make sure that it fits perfectly and compresses effectively.

They are commonly used to treat a wide range of conditions such as:

  • Arthritis 
  • Sprains 
  • Strains 
  • Edema

What about latex-free tubular bandages?

Latex-free tubular bandages are a type of bandage that’s used for compression, support and protection of limbs and other body parts. They have been designed to be used in medical and non-medical settings such as clinics and sports facilities.

They are made from high quality materials that are free of latex, which is generally the combination of synthetic materials that are:

  • Nylon 
  • Polyester 
  • Spandex

It’s ideal for people who have a latex allergy or are sensitive to latex, because the latex-free bandage can prevent skin irritation as a result of the allergy.

Some benefits of the latex-free tubular bandage are:

  • It’s versatile
  • Safe for people with latex allergies 
  • Comfortable 
  • Easy to apply

It’s especially recommended for those who frequently use tubular bandages, as it will be less likely to cause any skin sensitivity or irritation.

They are available in a range of sizes, and help with:

  • Post-operative care 
  • Promoting healing 
  • Reducing swelling

It is a safer alternative compared to regular tubular bandages, and it stays in place without any tape or clips.

Latex-free bandages can be made use of for the following reasons:

  • Padding for limbs under a compression bandage 
  • Protect the skin after the application of plaster of paris casts 
  • Dry/wet wrapping of eczema

Parts of the body where a tubular bandage can be applied

Since tubular bandages come in different sizes, they can be applied to specific parts of the body, which include:

  • Head 
  • Legs 
  • Arms 
  • Hands and feet

Let’s now discuss these points in detail.


Tubular bandages can be used to hold dressings or wound dressings in place on the head or the face.

They can also be used to support the jaw or to provide compression after a facial surgery.


These bandages can be applied to the thighs, ankles and calves. It is commonly used to treat conditions such as ankle sprains and varicose veins.


Tubular bandages are used to treat conditions muscle strains, tennis elbow and other conditions that arise.

It helps with relieving joint and muscle discomfort after any of the above mentioned conditions occur.


Conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome and arthritis are very common in most people, and they will need a tubular bandage for compression - especially after surgery or an injury.

If you are interested in finding out more information on bandages, read our article on A Summary of All Types of Available Bandages here.

You can go through our article on Best Ways to Bandage an Injured Finger for a detailed explanation you might need.

Related Questions

Are there alternatives to tubular bandages?

Yes, there are many other alternatives to tubular bandages, especially if the individual is allergic to the materials in the bandage.

The alternatives include:

  • Gauze - A thin material with a loose open weave, that’s ideal to use with bandage dressings.
  • Hypoallergenic tape - A tape that has been specifically designed to be removed gently without damaging skin that has a tendency to be sensitive.
  • Adhesive bandages - Another type of bandage that’s used as a medical dressing for minor injuries.

Can people be allergic to tubular bandages?

Yes, there are materials in these bandages that can sometimes cause an allergic reaction.

Some of the symptoms that could occur as a result of the allergy are:

  • Redness in the affected area 
  • Burning and swelling 
  • Cracked and dry skin


Tubular bandages are very essential when it comes to medical treatments, and are very versatile.

In this blog, we discussed tubular bandages, what parts of the body they can cover and potential substitutes for them, too.


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