Dr Tan Chyn Hong was interviewed by The Straits Times on skinny jeans and compartment syndrome. Health concerns on the risks of wearing skinny jeans were raised by a recent case of a 35-year-old Australian woman who ended up in the hospital with swollen legs after hours of squatting in those jeans.
The woman had possibly suffered from compartment syndrome due to reduced blood flow and oxygen to the muscles which experienced increased pressure from squatting in skinny jeans. Compartment syndrome is very rare in Singapore as Dr Tan sees fewer than 10 such cases a year.
There are acute and chronic causes for compartment syndrome. Acute causes are injuries to the limb, such as fractures. The bleeding and swelling from fractures causes pressure in the limb to rise and cause muscles and nerves to start dying. Chronic causes can stem from running. The increased amount of blood flow during running can build up pressure within the tight compartment of the legs. But fortunately, chronic compartment syndrome is usually not threatening.