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JPO Journal of Prosthetics & Orthotics:
doi: 10.1097/JPO.0000000000000019
Original Research Article

Effects of a Knee Varus Brace on Nonoperative Lateral Compartment Osteoarthritis

Fenter, Paula Click PT, DHSc, GCS

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Abstract

The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of the OAdjuster® (dj Orthopedics, Vista, CA, USA) brace on lateral compartment osteoarthritis (OA). The OAdjuster knee brace will effectively control joint angles in the frontal plane throughout the stance phase of the gait cycle. Two patients with valgus knee deformity diagnosed with lateral compartment OA in the right knee were included in this study. Both patients have been fitted with the OAdjuster knee brace in the treatment of OA. A subjective history was taken of each patient through a personal interview. Objective tests and measures were taken to rule out any other joint pathology. Each patient ambulated with and without the unloading brace and was filmed with two digital cameras. Analysis of joint angles and gait parameters was performed with the Ariel Performance Analysis System® (APAS) (Ariel Dynamics, Inc, San Diego, CA, USA). In case 1, the knee valgus angle at midstance decreased from 4.4° of valgus to 1.7° of valgus with the use of the brace. The hyperextension angle in the sagittal plane also decreased during single-limb stance on the braced limb from 12.1° to a neutral alignment. Other gait parameters in case 1 showed very little change with the use of the OAdjuster brace. Case 2 exhibited a decrease in valgus angle during midstance from 8.4° to 7.0°. The hyperextension angle during single-limb stance also decreased from 11.2° to 4.4°. Gait parameters also showed an improvement in case 2 with the use of the unloading brace. The OAdjuster brace may become a viable option for patients with lateral compartment OA and who are unable to undergo surgical procedures because of other comorbidities. The OAdjuster brace effectively controlled joint angles in the frontal and the sagittal plane throughout the stance phase of the gait cycle.

Copyright © 2014 American Academy of Orthotists and Prosthetists

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