Knee Bracing After Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction
Orthopedics 39(4): E602-E609
ISSN/ISBN: 1938-2367 PMID: 27203412 DOI: 10.3928/01477447-20160513-04
Although some articles in the literature are in favor of the use of a postoperative brace after anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction, this review found that several systematic reviews and other reports on the topic do not support the use of a postoperative brace after ACL reconstruction. There is no scientific evidence so far to support the routine use of a functional knee brace following a successful ACL reconstruction in the postoperative course. Most authors believe that bracing is not necessary. There is insufficient evidence to inform current practice. Good-quality randomized trials are required to remedy this situation. Future studies should better define the role of a brace following ACL surgery. A search of MEDLINE for articles published between January 1, 1995, and September 30, 2013, was performed. Key search terms used were ACL reconstruction and knee brace. Ninety-one articles were found, but only 28 focused on the subject of bracing after ACL reconstruction and were selected for this review. Several systematic reviews and randomized, controlled trials on the topic do not recommend the use of postoperative brace after ACL reconstruction. Postoperative bracing after ACL reconstruction does not seem to help with pain, function, rehabilitation, and stability. The literature does not support the use of a postoperative brace following ACL reconstruction. [Orthopedics. 2016; 39(4):e602-e609.].