R.K.G. Hyperextension Spine Brace
J. H. Bennett *
The accompanying illustration (
) shows an interesting, simple but quite effective hyperextension brace. This brace was designed and made by the author and by Lester Stovall, shop foreman of the Waco Orthopedic Brace & Limb Co. Use of this appliance is under the medical supervision of Dr. R. K. Gassier, orthopedic surgeon of Waco, Texas, who has used the appliance on several of his patients.
It consists of 5/16" cold rolled steel rod, which is covered with plastic tubing. It has two lateral uprights, extending up each side of the trunk, conforming to the torso and one anterior cross bar across the upper chest, just below the sternal notch, which has a rolled felt pad to eliminate the pressure. Pressure is exerted through pads over the symphysis and the sternum, and counter pressure through a wide webbing strap and leather plate across the mid back, set at whatever position may be required. The nice feature of this appliance is that it can be constructed very quickly, and at a very moderate cost to the patient. The two uprights are padded at the distal end where they come in contact with the crest of the illium.
Editor's Note: We are indebted to R. K. Gassier, M.D., of 1710 Colcord Ave., Waco Texas, for the following note about the use of this Hyperextension Spine Brace.
This brace is not an original device, but is the outgrowth of using several other recognized hyperextension braces. The pad in the lumbar region can be adjusted, lengthened, or shortened, and may be reinforced with metal as one desires. The restriction or the amount of hyperextension is regulated by the strap at the pelvis. The lateral bars are brought to the mid axillary line and thus restricts lateral motion.
This device is not to be used on a person one cannot trust, nor on one who requires more rigid fixation. It is a brace which is quite easily worn and will give as adequate support as the old Taylor type brace would give to the elderly patient who has dorsal lumbar or dorsal pain. It may also be used following more rigid supports such as a body jacket in the treatment of fractures of the upper lumbar or lower dorsal regions.
For a person with a considerable amount of abdominal weakness or abdominal protrusion, a fuller front may be attached to the support.