IDEO Brace Proves to be ‘Game-Changer’

The Intrepid Dynamic Exoskeletal Orthosis, or IDEO, a streamlined, energy-storing brace that delivers nearly instantaneous results.

IDEO Brace is a game ChangerDeveloped by Ryan Blanck,  a leading prosthetic at the state-of-the-art the Center for the Intrepid at Brook Army Medical. The IDEO is a lightweight, streamlined carbon-fiber device that can be tucked under a pant leg and into a boot or sneaker. It comprises a cuff that wraps around the leg just under the knee connected to a footplate by carbon-fiber rods.

The brace works by offloading the limb and allowing the patient to operate the lower limb in a way that avoids pain, he explained. When a service member’s heel strikes, the device stores energy through the gait cycle, then delivers it back to propel the foot forward.

The device is proving a “game-changer” for service members with salvaged limbs, said Johnny Owens, a CFI physical therapist who is working hand-in-hand with Blanck in treating IDEO-fitted warriors. “We’re seeing immediate changes we don’t usually see,” he said. Owens said the device also is highhandedly helping to turn the tide on a trend of wounded warriors opting for delayed amputations — amputations several months after injury. He attributes the trend to the slow, and sometimes frustrating, recovery for troops with lower leg injuries.

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5 Responses to IDEO Brace Proves to be ‘Game-Changer’

  1. Stephanie says:

    My youngest son took part in the trials of this device at BAMC in 2009. Thank you Ryan and Johnny!

  2. John Squeri says:

    any idea when this will be available to the civilian market
    I had a leg injury in 1987 and HAVEN’T been able to run since. Just walking can be tough @ times.

  3. Dee Rabalais says:

    My grandson (Wounded Warrior) deparately needs this device for his foot that was severely injured in IED in Iraq in 2006. How can he get more information on elgibility, etc.?

    • Johnny Owens says:

      He can send me an email and I can help get the ball rolling. Between our facility at the CFI or Ryan Blanck’s in Washington we should be able to help him out.

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