Knee Orthosis (KO)

A knee orthosis (KO) or knee brace is a brace worn to strengthen the knee. It is worn around the knee, and works by relieving pressure from the affected part of the knee joint. It also supports the knee, and provides the stability needed to perform daily activities. Knee braces may also help to properly align the knee to help reduce osteoarthritis pain. If pain or instability is experienced, a knee brace may be appropriate.

When used properly, a knee brace may help an athlete to stay in training. Knee braces may also help by improving symmetry, enhancing the position and movement of the knee while reducing pain so a person may remain active.

Knee Brace Options
  • Hinged knee supports/brace
  • Rehabilitative, corrective, functional
  • OA, ACL, PCL, combined
  • Post-operative
  • Knee immobilizers
Individuals who cannot undergo surgery may also consider a knee brace to help them deal with acute or chronic pain. Although a knee brace is not a substitute for orthopedic surgery, it may be effective for young people. It is also effective where only one side of the knee is experiencing pain. This condition may develop if a person's alignment is incorrect, and weight is being placed on one side of the knee more than the other.

A general knee-rehabilitation program (including strengthening and flexibility exercises, aerobic conditioning, technique refinement and proprioceptive retraining) is the most important factor in improving knee function and stability.