Tag Archives: surgery

Product Review – DonJoy Armor Extreme Knee Brace For Skiing

The DonJoy Armor Extreme Knee Brace is the strongest, off-the-shelf functional knee brace on the market and is designed for active people seeking ligament protection, excellent fit, and superb comfort. Over the years the Armor Extreme has been used extensively during skiing for people suffering from a wide range of knee conditions, primarily ACL and meniscus damage. Many patients utilize the Armor Extreme following knee surgery as a form of protection from re-injury, and allows them to continue to function at the high activity level they were at prior to the injury.

The ACL, or anterior cruciate ligament, is a ligament located inside the knee joint. It is one of the most important of four strong ligaments connecting the bones of the knee joint. The other three ligaments being the Posterior Cruciate Ligament (PCL), Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) and Lateral Collateral Ligament (LCL).

The function of the ACL is to prevent excessive forward movement of the lower leg bone (the tibia) in relation to the thigh bone (the femur), as well as limits rotational movements of the knee. Anterior cruciate ligament injuries are more frequent in females with between 2 and 8 times more females suffering a rupture than males. Skiers are more prone to ACL injuries due to twisting (torsional) falls, missteps and binding release issues. Improper condition also is a major cause of ACL and other ligament injuries.

The DonJoy Armor Extreme was designed for the most active of individuals. It offers many features that improve comfort and stability, without sacrificing support.

– A unique 4-Points-of-Leverage cuff and strap configuration, exerting a posterior force against the tibia, preventing anterior movement.

– A strong and lightweight 6061-T6 aircraft aluminum frame for medial / lateral control ensures maximum rigidity.

– Swiveling strap tabs on the frame accommodates changing leg and muscle positions.

– Anti-migration Supra Condyle Pad prevents slippage of the brace.

– Short Calf version to accommodate ski boots.

– Standard Polycentric Hinges for more natural knee range of motion.

– Silver-veined powder coat finish for maximum durability for the serious athlete.

– Optional Patella/Shin impact guards and calf pinch guard.

– Moldable, medial swooping frame for custom fit.

The Armor Extreme comes in a standard length and short calf for ski boot clearance. The brace also comes in a Ski version, which has a medial hinge deflector built into the inside hinge of the brace. This unique feature is for patients that wear two frames braces at the same time. The medial deflector prevents the hinges from catching when the knees are together, thereby preventing potential injury.

The Armor Extreme has been available for many years and has proven to be one of the most functional and supportive braces on the market. Donjoy is one of the largest brace manufacturers in the world and there products have been used by thousands of athletes. If someone requires a maximum supportive brace without customization, the Armor Extreme is one of the best choices in this very competitive market. For more information on this brace including sizing CLICK HERE.

It is always recommended to consult with your treating doctor to determine the correct brace for your orthopedic condition.

For more information on our full line of braces go to www.braceshop.com or call us at (866-325-8045).

Product Review – The Ossur Exoform Wrist Brace

The choice between the myriad of wrist braces and supports on the market is difficult and confusing. The Ossur Exoform Wrist Brace Ossur’s 21st Century breakthrough technology creates the new standard of ergonomic precision. If someone is looking for one of the best fitting, contoured wrist brace, the Ossur Exoform has set the standard.

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a condition that exerts pressure on the median nerve (a sensory nerve) at the wrist. The medium nerve extends from the arm into the hand and gives you feeling in your thumb, index, middle and ring fingers.

The name derives from the carpal bones that make up the wrist joint. The “carpal tunnel” is a narrow passageway where the nerve travels into the hand. It is composed of a combination of ligaments and bones.

When the soft tissue around the carpal tunnel becomes swollen or inflamed, it presses on the nerve in the tunnel and causes pain and numbness.

Carpal tunnel syndrome is usually caused by repetitive hand movements, or jobs that causes constant pressure on the wrist. Carpenters, computer operators and musicians are prone to develop this condition. Women who retain fluid (pregnancy, menopause), patients that are obese or with diabetes and arthritis are also known to develop carpal tunnel syndrome.

Patients with carpal tunnel syndrome usually feel numbness and tingling initially. As the condition becomes chronic, the patient may experience pain when gripping or with repetitive activities. Some patients notice an increase in pain and numbness in bed due to swelling and inflammation of the tissue and hand/wrist position when sleeping.

Treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome depends on the cause of the condition and the severity of the pain and numbness.

Treatment usually includes rest, ice and immobilization in a wrist splint. If the cause of the disorder is due to a medical condition, then your doctor will determine the treatment(s) for those conditions in an attempt to reduce the symptoms.

In more advanced cases, cortisone injections, non-steroidal anti-inflammatories and oral steroids have been used. Surgical correction is used as a last resort, when it is determined that persistent numbness and weakness may become permanent.

Surgery involves severing the ligament around the wrist to reduce pressure on the median nerve. This surgical procedure is called “carpal tunnel release.”

Used as a preventative brace or post-surgical support, the Ossur Exoform Wrist Brace has proven to be one of the most supportive and comfortable braces on the market.

It is ergonomically contoured on the inside of the brace, providing the most comfort and best fit. The contoured padding mirrors the shape of the patients body and the injected molded plastic supports surrounding the brace produce the highest degree of durability and immobilization.

An adjustable aluminum palmar stay allows for fine-tuning of the brace when needed. Providing this combination of comfort and support, ensures patient compliance and ease of use. The brace can be used both as a preventative or post-surgical brace.

It is available in an 8″ length for both day and nighttime use. It is also available in an extra small size for small wrist sizes. You can find more information and sizing instruction for this brace by Clicking Here.  A hot/cold gel pad is an available accessory for the brace for added benefit.

It is always recommended that you consult with your treating doctor to determine the cause of your orthopedic condition and the appropriate treatment.  Go to www.braceshop.com or call us today at (866)325-8045 for more information on the Ossue Exoform wrist brace.

Knee Braces for Osteoarthritis

What is osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee and why use knee braces?

Osteoarthritis is a painful degenerative condition that develops as the meniscus (cushioning cartilage in the knee joint) and/or the articular cartilage (soft, outer lining of the bones) begin to wear away. OA usually appears on one side of the knee joint, and affects both men and women across a broad age range.

What causes Knee Osteoarthritis?

A variety of conditions can lead to Knee Osteoarthritis. A previous knee injury or surgery that partially or entirely removed the meniscus from the knee is a common cause. Simple wear and tear of the knee joint occurring from years of activity can also be a factor.

What causes Osteoarthritis Knee Pain?

Osteoarthritis pain results from a deterioration or loss of cartilage. Pain is generally localized on the inside of the knee joint. Depending on the progression of the disease, the joint space may become small enough to allow the two bones to touch, causing pain.

Do I need Knee Surgery or a Knee Brace?

In the early stages of symptoms, a conservative approach is thought to be best. However, based on your history, symptoms, and the amount of degenerative change in your joint, your physician will determine the optimal treatment for you.

What are some non-surgical options?

An off-loading knee brace is considered one of the best treatment options. Injections, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS), supplements, strength and conditioning, including weight loss, and heel wedge insoles may also help reduce OA pain, especially when used in conjunction with bracing.

How effective are Osteoarthritis knee braces in treating pain?

Knee bracing is proven highly effective in relieving OA symptoms. Studies suggest that the majority of OA patients using braces report significantly reduced pain, increased activity levels, and a substantial reduction in the use of oral pain medications.

Studies available upon request.

A healthy knee joint without osteoarthritis
Healthy Knee
Healthy knee showing adequate space between bones
Osteoarthritis or OA of the knee

OA Knee
Osteoarthritic knee showing reduced space and contact between bones.


How does a knee brace work to relieve pain?


Off-loading knee braces, such as FUSION OA, and the new Solus OA aid in pain relief by gently applying pressure to the unaffected side of the knee to relieve the compressive force in the affected


Are knee braces comfortable?


Not all braces are comfortable, but FUSION OA provides exceptional comfort even during all-day use. It is designed to offer the best combination of pain relief, comfort and fit, and unlike other functional braces, FUSION OA won’t migrate or slip.


Will a knee brace fit under my clothes?


Many knee braces are heavy and bulky, but FUSION OA & Solus OA is sleek and lightweight and fits discreetly under clothing.


How often do I need to wear the brace?


Your physician will direct you as to the frequency of use. Generally, you should expect to wear the brace during activities that would otherwise result in knee pain.


Will my health insurance pay for an OA knee brace?


Since The Brace Shop is a wholesale company, we do not participate in any insurance plants. Please check with your insurance carrier to determine coverage for OA knee braces. To see our full line of OA Braces,


For more information, visit is at www.braceshop.com or call us at (866) 325-8045.

Why Should I Wear A Knee Brace?

Knee Brace

Types of Knee Braces

There are basically three types of braces: Post-operative, functional and preventative/prophylactic knee braces. Post-op braces are usually prescribed following surgery or an injury when the knee requires complete immobilization.

There are basically three types of braces: Post-operative, functional and preventative/prophylactic knee braces.

Post-op braces are usually prescribed following surgery or an injury when the knee requires complete immobilization. These braces are usually long braces that may extend from the upper thigh to the lower leg. After surgery or a severe knee injury, mild to moderate pain and edema of the knee occurs. Your doctor may prescribe a knee immobilizer which prevents the knee from bending. These devices are used as an alternative to cast immobilization.

The doctor may also prescribe a post-operative brace that has hinges that offer range of motion capabilities. These post-operative braces are innovative, easy-to-use braces that can adjust the range of motion with the click of a button. These braces can immobilize the knee and then allow controlled increases in range-of-motion as the knee heals and the patient begins physical therapy.

There is no controversy with these types of braces, as they have proven effective and efficient as an alternative to cast immobilization.

Functional braces are hinged supports that support and take over the function of damaged knee ligaments in and around the knee. These braces can be fabric style with hinges, or complete metal frames or carbon fiber. These braces are designed to protect the MCL (Medial Collateral Ligaments), LCL (Lateral Collateral Ligament), Meniscus, ACL (Anterior Cruciate Ligament) and PCL (Posterior Cruciate Ligament). You may have noticed some professional football players using these types of braces.

Prophylactic or preventative braces are supports that are used by some athletes that do not have an injury, but prefer to wear a brace to prevent injury, especially in high impact and contact sports like football, rugby, skiing and water sports. This is where we get some controversy.

Many doctors feel it is not only unnecessary to wear a brace to support a normal joint, but may cause harm, as it may affect the biomechanics of the patients gait. Some doctors are also concerned about weakness in the knee joint from prolonged use of knee braces. The more rigid braces will remove stress away from the knee and the surrounding muscles and ligaments and may cause atrophy and loss of bone density.

Many doctors however feel that given the right circumstances, these braces, when used properly, can provide a level of protection for athletes, especially in high impact sports. Some patients with inherited unstable knees can benefit from this type of brace.

It is important that you consult with your physician and therapist before deciding on a knee brace. There are hundreds of manufacturers and thousands of knee braces to choose from, so it can be very confusing. There are braces specific for ACL tears, and ones for patella tracking. If you purchase the wrong brace for your condition, you may not only risk further injury, but may cause other problems.  Feel free to browse www.braceshop.com and Shop By Condition to see which type of brace you should be looking for or feel free to call our technical department at (866)325-8045.