Knee Braces: Not an Arthritis Cure, But a Comfort

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When you have an arthritic knee, a little support can provide you temporary relief from the pain and discomfort. That’s what a knee brace does.

“Knee bracing can help, in some cases, to limit the symptoms patients are having with knee arthritis,” explains orthopedic surgeon Matthew Lawless, MD.

He adds, however: “No brace … has been shown to limit or slow the progression of knee arthritis.”

Dr. Lawless talks about the use of knee braces to help patients with knee arthritis.

Click play to watch the video or read video transcript.

Knee bracing is most effective in relieving the pain and discomfort of arthritis when the inside compartment of the knee is the area affected. Bracing can allow a ligament to heal, relieve kneecap pain, or boost confidence.

Bracing may help some more than others. In any case, the relief is temporary, and the bracing will not slow the progression of arthritis and the joint damage it causes.

According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, there are four types of knee braces:

  • Functional. Gives support to knees that have already been injured
  • Prophylactic. Protects knees from injuries during contact sports like football
  • Rehabilitative. Limits harmful knee movement while a knee is healing after an injury or surgery
  • Unloader/offloader. Provides relief to people who have arthritis in their knees

It's easy to get the care you need.

See a Premier Physician Network provider near you.