A lot of people love skinny jeans. You can dress them up or down, they look great with sneakers, boots or heels, and they showcase the very best assets of certain posterior parts of the anatomy. However, as proven recently by a woman who suffered severe health issues as a result of her perfectly cute skinny jeans, you need to think carefully about how and when you wear them.
The journal, Neurology, Neurosurgery & Psychiatry, published a report that serves as a cautionary tale, detailing the experience of a 35-year-old Australian woman who helped a family member move. Based on the report, the woman, snug in her skinny jeans, did a great deal of squatting while emptying cupboards. During the day she “recalled that her jeans had felt increasingly tight and uncomfortable.”
Then, on her way home, she started to experience foot drop and numbness in both feet, causing her to fall down. Once down, she was unable to get up and spent the next few hours on the ground until she was found and brought to the Royal Adelaide Hospital. The doctors were forced to cut the jeans off her body due to the swelling in her legs.
Neurologists discovered that the woman had little muscle strength in her ankles and toes, and that her tibial and peroneal nerves weren’t sending signals properly down through her lower legs and feet.
Fortunately, the effects weren’t permanent. The doctors were able to treat her with intravenous hydration, helping to reduce the fluid retention in her legs and improve her neurological function. Four days later she was able to walk on her own.
Had the woman worn a nice pair of sweatpants or loose fitting jeans to help her relative move, she likely wouldn’t have had an issue squatting and getting up over and over again. The skinny jeans appeared to be the culprit, compressing the nerves in the back of her calf and reducing the amount of blood that was being pumped to the muscles.
“The wearing of ‘skinny’ jeans had likely potentiated the tibial neuropathies by causing a compartment syndrome as the lower legs swelled,” wrote the authors of the report.
Dr. Thomas Kimber of the Royal Adelaide Hospital told the Associated Press that while nerve damage in the groin had been observed as a potential consequence of wearing skinny jeans, this kind of lower leg issue was new. He said, “I think it's the non-stretchy nature of jeans that might be the problem."
The Internet has been on fire the last few days prompting people to wonder if the trendy denim pants should be retired giving all of our bodies a little more room to breathe . Some think skinny jeans should go in the trash while others agree that they should simply be worn with caution. There is, after all, such a thing as too tight.
However, some skinny jeans contain so much elastic that they more closely resemble yoga pants than traditional denim. And some have discussed the fact that people should think about dressing appropriately for doing lots of squatting rather than squeezing themselves into tight jeans that don’t have any give.
One lesson to take away from this woman’s experience is, if what you’re wearing for any given task isn’t comfortable, it’s a good idea to go and change.
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