What is an Orthosis?

An orthosis is the correct term for an externally applied device that is designed and fitted to the body to achieve one or more of the following goals:

  • Control biomechanical alignment
  • Correct or accommodate deformity
  • Protect and support an injury
  • Assist rehabilitation
  • Reduce pain
  • Increase mobility
  • Increase independence

We would commonly prescribe the following orthoses:

  • Foot Orthoses, for various foot, leg or postural problems
  • Ankle and Knee Orthoses, for joint protection, pain reduction or support after surgery
  • Ankle-Foot Orthoses and Knee-Ankle-Foot Orthoses to improve mobility, support rehabilitation and biomechanical goals
  • Upper Limb orthoses, to provide positional and functional support to the upper limb
  • Fracture Orthoses, the modern alternative to plaster or fibreglass casts
  • Spinal Orthoses, to correct or control spinal deformities and injuries and to provide immobilisation or support to spinal injuries.

Please take care: There are a wide variety of prefabricated and custom made orthoses available for many musculo-skeletal problems. They are specialised devices and should always be fitted by fully qualified orthotists/prosthetists like Meintjes and Neethling.