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Extremities Feature

Courtesy: TayCo Brace LLC

Over the Shoe Brace: Immediate Functional Recover

Tracey Romero • Fri, September 1st, 2017

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A new over the shoe ankle brace, TayCo External Ankle Brace from TayCo Brace LLC, is stirring up interest with its patented technology that offers injured athletes immediate functional recovery, allowing them to get back in the game quickly after an ankle injury.

Fred Ferlic, M.D., a retired orthopedic surgeon and former team physician for the University of Notre Dame, told OTW that the brainchild of the brace is Mike Bean, an associate athletic trainer at the University of Notre Dame. He developed it while working with the football team, frustrated with traditional treatments.

It started out as way to stabilize ankle injuries sustained on the football field so that the player could finish the game. He wanted a brace that would provide better support than ankle tape or spatting the shoe could provide.

After several years of using it for his players, Bean wondered if other people could benefit from the brace. He then reached out to Dr. Ferlic and Notre Dame to see about commercializing it.

Dr. Ferlic said he quickly realized that the brace could not only help athletes, but also anybody suffering from any ankle condition or injury. Even patients with multiple sclerosis or Parkinson’s disease can enjoy better ankle stability with this brace.

“I have worked as an orthopedic surgeon for over 40 years and am retired now, but I took this on because I believe it will help millions of people. So far we have given them to 200 patients in the South Bend area with unbelievable patient satisfaction," he said.

What is unique about this brace, according to Dr. Ferlic, is that it is provides increased stability and performance while fitting over the patient's own shoe. The brace can be molded to fit not only the low to high top shoes that football players wear (or any other cleated sport such as lacrosse, etc.), but also any jogging/walking shoe/boot for everyday people.

It is also easy-to use and can be worn with a person's personal foot orthotic. And because the brace is on the outside of the shoe, you don’t have to change your shoe size to accommodate the brace.

The TayCo Brace offers adaptability with a range of motion model and fixed 90 degree alternative. Besides an athletic version (low profile or high profile), there are also a medical model that fits simply over a walking shoe and a workers compensation model that can be worn over a work boot.

The hinged uprights are attached to a solid piece that encompasses a portion of the medial and lateral aspects of the foot and the entire heel, while a non-removable Velcro strap across the dorsal aspect of the foot secures the brace to the foot while the two up-rights are secured with athletic tape for athletes (spatting) and Velcro for patients.

Dr. Ferlic said that patients from all walks of life can get back to work and back to life while still going through the healing process. With this external ankle brace, they are able to drive a car and perform all their normal daily activities without fear of causing further injury to themselves.

“I think it will eventually replace 85% of all casts, CAMS (Controlled Ankle Motion Walkers) and ankle-foot orthosis (AFOs),” he said. “The TayCo Ankle Brace eliminates limb imbalance and avoids soft tissue problems associated with casts, walking boots, and other AFOs.”

Other benefits of this brace include that it is lightweight, typically weighing only 12 ounces and that no casting is required. The custom and semi-custom models are made from simple measurements and 3 shoe/boot pictures with a smart phone, and can be molded specifically for either the right or left ankle for a more anatomically correct fit.

The TayCo Brace is only available through medical providers. Diagnoses involves all top 40 ICD-10 codes, including sprains, fractures, arthritis, chronic instability, neurological disorders (MS, footdrop), etc.

Get more information here.

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One Response to “Over the Shoe Brace: Immediate Functional Recover”

  1. Adam Waugh, CO says:

    I am an orthotist and have evaluated and fit about 30 of these for patients with torn ligaments, full ankle replacements, and for patients that have diabetes with neuropathy that are in a nursing home setting and need some extra stability above the ankle but have grown accustomed to using diabetic shoes with foot orthoses and do not want to consider other AFO options. Every patient I have worked with has really liked the orthosis, especially compared to the CAM walker they would have been using otherwise for some post operative patients. The orthosis slides over their shoe, is easy to don and can be modified/adjusted relatively easily. Most patients prefer the straps to be pulled very tightly especially the one over the shoe.
    Patient’s are so happy to hear that they can use their current footwear. Overall this is a great orthosis. I definitely will keep doing them.

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