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New DVT research shows flight socks essential

For immediate release
2 December 2003

New DVT research shows flight socks essential for all travellers

New international research has confirmed the benefits of wearing flight socks for all travellers on both short and long haul flights.

The “Lonflit” IV and V studies, led by Italian Professor Gianni Belcaro of G D’Annunzio University, evaluated the control of edema and deep vein thrombosis (DVT) when flight socks were worn by both low-medium risk, and high risk subjects .

Researchers assessed 372 low-medium risk and 224 high risk passengers on long-haul flights. In the Lonflit IV study, half the participants wore flight socks, and the remaining half wore no compression hosiery. Results revealed that there was no incidence of blood clots (DVTs) in the group that wore flight socks, however six travellers from the other group developed blood clots.

The results from the “Lonflit V” study of high-risk subjects has also reinforced the importance of wearing flight socks. The study found there were six blood clots in the non-flight sock group, and only one in the group that wore flight socks. All passengers were screened with ultrasound for blood clots before, and after their flight.

In addition to the “Lonflit” series, further research into DVT conducted by Professor Belcaro earlier this year identified that air travellers on journeys as short as three hours are at risk of developing DVT. Professor Belcaro found that most blood clots develop in the first two to three hours and grow larger with time .

Victoria Potter, Scholl NZ Manager says Professor Belcaro’s studies into DVT reinforces the importance of wearing flight socks for all Kiwi travellers, and not just those who have a greater predisposition to the risks of DVT.

“With the holiday season fast approaching it’s vital for New Zealanders, who love to travel, to be aware of the risks of DVT. Due to our geographical location, any trip to another country is going to take more than three hours and the research now shows that even a short distance can be long enough for a blood clot to develop.”

Whether it’s a short haul flight to Australia, or a longer trip to somewhere in the Northern Hemisphere, there are simple precautions people can take to reduce potential blood clots such as frequent exercise throughout the trip, drinking plenty of water and wearing flight socks,” says Ms Potter.

All Scholl Flight Socks work to improve blood flow using a clinically proven graduated compression system to help reduce the risk of Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) whilst travelling. Scholl has also recently launched new Flight Socks Ladies – a beige denier knee-high compression stocking specifically designed for women.

Scholl Flight Socks do not require professional sizing or fitting, have a recommended retail price of $37.95 per pair, and are available at leading pharmacies nationwide. Visit for more details on Scholl Flight Socks.


1. DVT is a blood clot that forms in the leg veins, most commonly in the calf or thigh.

2. There are five studies within the “Lonflit” series led by Professor Belcaro of G D’Annunzio University. “Lonflit” I and II established that in high-risk subjects after flights of 10 hours or more the incidence of DVT is between 2.8% and 4.5%. Lonflit III showed a reduction in DVT in high-risk subjects with one dose of low molecular weight heparin. Lonflit IV showed that Scholl Flight Socks are effective in controlling edema and in reducing the incidence of DVT in low-medium risk subjects on long-haul flights of 7-12 hours. Lonflit V showed that Scholl Flight Socks are effective in controlling edema and in reducing the incidence of DVT in high-risk subjects on long-haul flights of 11.5-12 hours.

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