Orthoses for Lower Extremity
Ankle and Foot:
Foot and Ankle braces are a common form of support to help with the effects of alignment issues, nerve damage, or a neurological condition. They create stability, improved walking, and help keep patients mobile. There are many different solutions designed to help with these issues:
- Ankle and Foot Orthoses – are designed to provide support and proper joint alignment to the foot and ankle, assist with muscle weakness, and protect the foot and lower limb.
- Functional Electrical Stimulation – uses patterns of electrical stimulation to activate nerves and help facilitate movement
- Diabetic Shoes & Inserts – proper shoes and cushioning inserts, often make up a treatment plan to manage foot complications due to diabetes
- Foot Orthoses – Custom shoe orthotics are commonly used to manage foot pain as well as pain in other parts of your body.
As simple as it is to bend your knee, it is a complex joint. Even the smallest of injuries can result in pain and restrict your mobility. Even worse, if it is left untreated, improper movement can create more damage and require more significant treatment. The most common injuries to the knee include:
- Torn Meniscus – Twisting of the knee can tear meniscal cartilage, causing pain and stiffness.
- Osteoarthritis of the Knee – This results from wearing down your knee cartilage over time, causing pain, stiffness, and swelling
- Torn or Strained ACL, PCL, and MCL – The Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) is responsible for the stability in your knee. Tears and strains can also occur in the Posterior Cruciate Ligament (PCL) and the Medial Cruciate Ligament (MCL).
There are a variety of knee orthoses that can help support, stabilize, align or immobilize the knee following an injury or manage a chronic knee condition.
- Knee Orthoses – Designed to offload areas of osteoarthritis or aid in the stability of the knee joint secondary to ligament injury, postoperative reconstruction, meniscus damage, and for preventative protection.
- Knee Ankle Foot Orthoses – Designed to provide support to, and proper joint allignment of the knee, foot, and ankle. Also assist or substitute for muscle weakness, and protect the foot and lower limb.
A patient may have a hip disorder or have had hip surgery and require a hip orthosis to stabilize the hip, limit motion, and allow the hip to heal. Hip disorders affect the hip joint, which impacts thigh movement and your ability to support the weight of your body. Common hip disorders include:
- Chronic Hip Instability – Adult patients who have experienced a subluxation of their hip may be at risk for similar dislocations in the future.
- Developmental Dysphasia – A shallow hip socket that allows a newborn baby’s hip to easily dislocate.
- Perthes Disease – Bone degeneration affecting children ages 3 – 11 years due to inadequate blood supply to the bones.
The components of a hip orthosis can be: hip/pelvic girdle, thigh cuff, and hip joint. The joints are usually adjustable, and allow some degree of movement.
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