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Is "Shapewear" Bad For Your Body? | Ask the Expert
Shapewear is generally safe, but not if it’s too tight. If it is too tight you can have <a href="https://www.mylifestages.org/medicallibrary/MedLibrary.page?medlib=1&section=healthinfo&page=article&sgml_id=hw57226">bladder infections</a>, nerve damage, or blood clots. The hard part is knowing how tight is too tight. If you have trouble breathing, have marks on your skin, or have any numbness, tingling, or swelling of your arms or legs then it is too tight. You can always bring your shapewear to your primary care physician to get their opinion (don’t be embarrassed — we get questions about everything!).
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Question:

Is "shapewear" like Spanx bad for you? It seems like it could be cutting off circulation or squeezing / putting too much pressure on internal organs?

Answer:

Elizabeth Ziemann, M.D.Elizabeth Ziemann, M.D.Family MedicineSutter Pacific Medical Foundation
Expert
Elizabeth Ziemann, M.D.Family MedicineSutter Pacific Medical Foundation

Dr. Elizabeth Ziemann is a graduate of the University of Iowa College of Medicine Family Medicine Residency program. She has recently joined the Sutter Pacific Medical Foundation-Cesar Chavez Primary Care Clinic in San Francisco. Her areas of interest include women and children’s health, chronic disease management, preventive care, office procedures, and inpatient medicine. She is fluent in Spanish and enjoys playing the cello, gardening, cooking, and traveling.

Shapewear is generally safe, but not if it’s too tight. If it is too tight you can have bladder infections, nerve damage, or blood clots.

The hard part is knowing how tight is too tight. If you have trouble breathing, have marks on your skin, or have any numbness, tingling, or swelling of your arms or legs then it is too tight. You can always bring your shapewear to your primary care physician to get their opinion (don’t be embarrassed — we get questions about everything!).

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