For those who have suffered life altering injuries leaving their legs paralyzed or with limited mobility, the dream of leaving your wheelchair might now be possible! The C-Brace is the world’s first electronic knee joint orthosis system with hydraulic stance and swing phase control that attaches to your leg and allows the wearer to walk. Yep, you read that right.
According to Ottobocks, the makers of the brace, the orthotronic mobility system supports the user while walking and is able to recognize different leg movements. The brace is made up of a foot component, a spring element, lower leg shell and a thigh shell, the knee angle sensor, control buttons, the battery and microprocessor to receive sensor signal.
See, what makes the C-Brace revolutionary is its Stance and Swing Phase Control Orthosis (SSCO) that works together with the microprocessor. When you swing your leg forward with the brace on, the microprocessor measures your joint movement every .02 seconds which allows the brace to respond and regulate the required support for any movement immediately thus moving your legs to walk.
This brace is helping people get back on their feet again and Ottobocks has a dedicated success stories blog on their website. Stacey Kozel is one of the many who has experienced her newly found freedom and taking it one step further. She’s started a path towards increasing awareness for the C-Brace by hiking the 2,190 mile Appalachian Trail while wearing the brace. Her story has been covered from well-known media outlets like CNN and NBC to the Washington Post and the Huffington Post! With a price tag of $75,000 a brace, Stacey knew she couldn’t afford it and reached out to her insurance for help. But it took her a year of insurance denials and appeals until the braces were no longer seen as unnecessary and was able to received braces for both legs, she told the Washington Post. She hopes that those that qualify for the C-Brace that don’t know they exist or get an insurance denial will be more informed and encouraged to not give up towards the dream of walking again.
There is a small catch to this brace though. In order for the C-Brace to be effective you must be able to swing your leg from your hip and like all medical devices you have to work with you doctor or orthoptist to see if you are a candidate. It’s important to fully understand how the brace works and practice with it due to the learning curve. The great news is that if you are a candidate your insurance may be able to help you cover the cost and the C-Brace Reimbursement team is always happy to work closely with each individual. For more information about the C-Brace, visit www.ottobockus.com/c-brace.html