Knee brace that doesn't compress and looks decent under clothes?
February 6, 2019 1:47 PM   Subscribe

My doctor gave me instructions to purchase a patellar stabilizing brace (online, to save me money). Is there an alternative brace that accomplishes the same biomechanical goal (and is unobtrusive i.e. very low profile) without compressing too much?

Fabric braces that entirely wrap around the leg compress too much (which aggravates paresthesia in my feet. I didn't have time to explain this to the doctor, unfortunately). All the patellar stabilizers I could find are essentially sleeves that compress like this, it seems.

So I was wondering if rigid braces like this one, which redistribute load elsewhere (I think to the thigh, shin, and healthier parts of the knee, in braces meant for e.g. unicompartmental OA), might cause less compression? Or do they squeeze just as much as fabric braces? I was hoping that maybe if three focal points took the pressure, the whole thigh area wouldn't be compressed that much.

Stress needs to be taken off the medial area. The lateral side probably shouldn't get too much stress either. Need patellar stabilization that is largely neutral and, I am thinking, stress redistribution that doesn't overly burden the lateral side, or compress the leg.

I will ask my physiotherapist when I see her later this week, as well. Looking for either a) people's experiences with knee braces or b) info from someone with the inside scoop on how braces work biomechanically.

(Taping doesn't work for me, have tried it - I need some kind of actual buttress, not a proprioceptive cue.)

It would be GREAT if this thing could look decent under pants, but that's far from the most important thing.

Secondary question: in Ontario, which professional would you see for assistance in choosing a brace, other than a sports medicine doctor? The people at Shoppers' Wellwise are not as knowledgeable as I would prefer.
posted by cotton dress sock to Health & Fitness (2 answers total)
The KT Tape company makes, for lack of a better term, stick-on braces? I used them for dance class after a major knee injury. They’re effectively strips of KT Tape with boning inset into them, and you put them vertically on the sides of your leg. I was super dubious but very very impressed at the amount of stabilization they provided. (I’m on mobile, but I’ll try to remember to drop a link when I get home later tonight.)
posted by okayokayigive at 2:32 PM on February 6, 2019 [1 favorite]

these are perhaps what okayokay was referring to?

i have one of these knee straps that is okay. i'm not that versed in knee stuff tho, so not sure if it's what you would find helpful.
posted by misanthropicsarah at 11:59 AM on February 7, 2019

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