ACL Knee Braces

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Knee Brace: ACL

Injuries to the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) are common knee injuries among athletes, especially women. And because the wear and tear of aging weakens the ligaments of the knee, an ACL tear is also not uncommon when one over the age of 40 falls.  

The ACL is two bundles of connective tissues inside of the knee join. The ligament connects the back of the femur, or thigh bone, to the front of the tibia, or shin bone. It is one of the four main ligaments responsible for stabilizing the knee. More specifically, it is responsible for controlling how far the shin bone can extend relative to the thigh bone.

The ACL can be partially or completely torn in a number of ways, with many of these involving non-contact motions. Sudden changes of direction or abrupt deceleration are often the causal factors for an ACL tear.

ACL Tear Treatment

Unfortunately, this area of the knee does not receive much blood flow necessary for the body to naturally heal an ACL tear. Thus, surgery to reconstruct the ligament is most often the method of treatment for an ACL tear, especially for athletes who need to continue to be able to pivot, cut and the like.

One can engage in physical therapy to strengthen the muscles surrounding the knee to somewhat compensate for an absent or weakened ACL, but not repairing the ACL tear significantly ups the odds the knee will be injured again, not to mention it excludes the affected individual from engaging in at-risk athletic activities.  

Surgery involves reconstructing the ACL ligament using tissues from other areas of one’s body (the patella tendon or hamstring) or from a tissue bank.

After the surgery begins the real recovery process; one must undergo extensive rehabilitative exercises, stretches and such to return the knee to its pre-injury condition. This process typically takes the better part of a year.  

Torn ACL Brace

For proper recovery after an ACL tear, immediately following the surgery one must wear an ACL post op brace and use crutches. Wearing an ACL brace after surgery helps stabilize and immobilize the knee, giving the new ACL a chance to heal. At BraceAbility, one can find a number of ACL knee braces for use after surgery.

One top-selling ACL reconstruction brace is the Ossur Flex OTS Knee Ligament Support Brace. This is considered the best ACL brace by many because it is more versatile both in terms of shape and function than the majority of knee braces after ACL surgery. For one, Ossur’s knee brace is an ACL post op brace as well as a functional ACL brace.

This ACL knee brace consists of a carbon composite frame that is heat-moldable. This means that the brace can be adjusted as the leg changes shape following surgery and to accommodate for edema. Also allowing for a custom fit, the tibial strap is adjustable.

Ossur also offers a sport model of this brace specifically designed for lean, athletic legs.

The ACL functional brace also features range-of-motion hinges for proper flexion and extension control following surgery. In addition, gel condylar pads not only improve suspension, the gel pads also ensure that they are the most comfortable fit for sore knees following surgery.

As noted, this ACL post op brace can also function as an ACL sports brace for athletics involving low to medium contact and impact. It is also one of the few knee braces for ACL support on the market that is non-corrosive. This means the Ossur ACL knee brace can be used for water sports, specifically, the Ossur CTI OTS Ligament Knee Brace.

ACL Brace for Sports

As you likely inferred, once one is cleared to begin participating in sports once more, he or she will likely have to wear an ACL leg brace for some time, especially if the sport involves contact with other players. Again, there are a variety of styles from which to choose at BraceAbility.

Consider the DeRoyal Hypercontrol Hyperextension Slip-on Knee Brace. This ACL injury brace is designed to improve stability of the knee as well to prevent the hyperextension that often causes an ACL injury.

This ACL tear brace features unique wrapping of straps at the back of the knee as well as both medial and lateral hinges to prevent the shin from extending too far relative to the thigh.

This brace for ACL injury also has two adjustable buttresses for ultimate knee stability. And the ACL sports brace is composed of breathable Tri-tex material, which is an alternative to neoprene.