Hyperextension braces are commonly used to treat spinal compression fractures and help your back recover after spine surgery. These braces are used to treat fractures and back pain that occur where the thoracic spine (upper back) meets the lumbar spine (low back). It is designed to limit movement in these 2 regions of the spine.
To limit front bending, a hyperextension brace features a rectangular metal frame that goes over the front of the body. This frame puts pressure on the chest and pubic bone. Because a hyperextension brace is primarily used to treat spinal compression fractures that occur where the upper back meets the low back, this brace also puts pressure and support on the thoracic spine. This pressure keeps the spine in an extended position.
A hyperextension brace also features 3 pads that help stabilize the spine and prevent forward movement. One pad is located along the abdominals, another is higher up on the chest, and the third pad is on the back and covers the affected area.
How Does a Hyperextension Brace Work?
Hyperextension braces prevent you from bending forward too much. In turn, this prevents you from potentially interfering with the healing of your spinal compression fracture and sensitive spinal structures. This type of spinal brace may also be prescribed if you’ve just had spine surgery involving the thoracic or upper lumbar region of the spine. A hyperextension brace will take the pressure off of weak vertebrae and ensure that you don’t bend too far forward. Though hyperextension braces restrict bending of the spine, you may still bend to the side and rotate.