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Knee Surg Sports Traumatol Arthrosc. 2011 Aug;19(8):1347-54. doi: 10.1007/s00167-011-1454-8. Epub 2011 Mar 3.

Knee braces can decrease tibial rotation during pivoting that occurs in high demanding activities.

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  • 1Orthopaedic Sports Medicine Center, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of Ioannina, Ioannina, Greece.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

The purpose of this study was to investigate whether knee braces could effectively decrease tibial rotation during high demanding activities.

METHODS:

Using an in vivo three-dimensional kinematic analysis, 21 physically active, healthy, male subjects were evaluated. Each subject performed two tasks that were used extensively in the literature because they combine increased rotational and translational loads on the knee, (1) descending from a stair and subsequent pivoting and (2) landing from a platform and subsequent pivoting under three conditions: (A) wearing a prophylactic brace (braced), (B) wearing a patellofemoral brace (sleeved), and (C) unbraced condition.

RESULTS:

In the first task, tibial rotation during the pivoting phase was significantly decreased in the braced condition as compared to the sleeved condition (P = 0.019) and the non-braced condition (P = 0.002). In the second task, the same variable was significantly decreased in the braced condition as compared to the sleeved (P = 0.001) and the unbraced condition (P < 0.001). The sleeved condition also produced significantly decreased tibial rotation with respect to the unbraced condition (P = 0.021).

CONCLUSIONS:

Bracing decreased tibial rotation in activities where increased translational and rotational forces were applied. Because knee braces decreased tibial rotation, they can possibly be used with ACL-reconstructed and ACL-deficient patients to prevent such problems.

LEVEL OF EVIDENCE:

Case-control study, Level III.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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