Hesperian Health Guides
How to Correct Contractures Using Adjustable Braces
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The advantage of these braces is that children do not have to visit the rehabilitation center so often to have them adjusted. The family can adjust them at home.
Orthopedic suppliers in some countries sell special knee and ankle joints that can be locked in different positions. But these are very expensive. However, a skilled village craftsperson can put together something similar:
|Knee and ankle joints can be adjusted every few days to gradually straighten the joints.||Space the holes on the 2 pieces differently so that lining them up allows a range of small adjustments.|
|leather or plastic cuffs||adjustment screw or pin|
A much simpler low-cost model can be made of round or flat metal bar.
Two designs for adjustable braces to correct ankle contractures
|wood wedges of different widths||notch to grip rod|
Fit different wedges between stop and rod to change adjustment.
Add a wide, well-padded ankle strap.
Note: This design is complicated to make, but can be adjusted while the brace is on the child.
|Bend the rod tips like this.||Bolt them tightly between 2 layers of thin wood.||Bend rods up a little more every few days.|
An adjustable wood brace for knee and ankle contractures
|Using ‘wing nuts’ makes it easier to remove the bolts for clamping the position of the cross pieces.|
|The positions of these 2 cross pieces can be changed to adjust the angle of the knee and foot.||Use thin pieces of hard wood about 2 cm. wide and 6 to 8 mm. thick.|
See information about homemade aids to straighten contractures, using car inner tubes and other elastic or springy material.