Methwold Hythe inventor gives patients a leg up

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A retired engineer from Norfolk has invented a device that could transform the lives of people who suffer from conditions that force them to wear surgical stockings.

Trevor Gooch, 72, who lives in Methwold Hythe with his wife Pauline, suffers from circulation problems and came up with the idea after struggling to put on his surgical stockings every day.

He said: “It’s difficult getting the tight fitting compression stockings on when you’re struggling to bend your knee or reach your feet, and even with my wife helping she would damage her fingernails trying to pull on the tight material.”

Surgical stockings are often used to treat older patients with circulation or swelling problems in the legs that occur due to the natural loss of elasticity of the skin, and are usually worn for the rest of their lives.

The device, which is patent-pending, is a simple wire frame structure, manufactured from 6mm metal rod, and it sits comfortably on the knee whilst seated allowing the user to roll the stockings on to the frame before sliding them easily on to the leg whilst stood up.

Trevor, who retired 20 years ago and has 11 grandchildren, said: “It has been a godsend. Absolute magic. Now I can get the stockings on without any difficulty.”

The device is already proving popular with local healthcare professionals who deal with many patients who simply refuse to wear the stockings because of the challenge of putting them on and have to struggle placing stockings over existing bandages.

Trevor spent nine months perfecting his prototype device and hopes it will become popular nationwide and beyond. He said: “We started selling them only last month and have sold 60 from word of mouth alone, particularly to older folk.”

The device could transform the lives of those who suffer with conditions such as varicose veins and arthritis, and Trevor hopes it will provide its users with the ability to overcome their otherwise debilitating conditions.