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Old    pacifichigh (pacifichigh)      Join Date: Jun 2008       03-02-2009, 1:18 PM Reply   
I blew out my ACL 10 years and want to get a knee brace with more substance.

I'm looking at the CTI Edge and CTI OTC. Anyone have feedback on which is better for riding?
Old    ajmac            03-02-2009, 5:06 PM Reply   
What about the Vapor? If all I want to use if for is wake/snowboarding and adult no-check hockey, will I be alright?
Old    Andrew Moreton (andrew_moreton)      Join Date: Feb 2003       03-02-2009, 5:45 PM Reply   
I use the Vapor for wakeboarding and snowboarding and love it.
Old    JJ (hardway180)      Join Date: Feb 2009       03-03-2009, 8:23 AM Reply   
Get the standard. It is almost as light as the vapor but stronger. That's what most of the pros ride. On their website they post all of their endorsed wake pros.
Old    B Poser (bbr)      Join Date: Apr 2002       03-03-2009, 8:27 AM Reply   
I roll the Vapor, and it is plenty strong. CTI is definately the best brace on the market, and they have the best customer service I've experienced. You won't be disappointed.
Old    michaelspsp (michaelspsp)      Join Date: Sep 2007       03-03-2009, 8:55 AM Reply
Old    Waylon (wayz)      Join Date: Jun 2005       03-03-2009, 12:19 PM Reply   
I was always curious how much these things are. I may need one. I heard it's expensive.
Old    M-Dizzle (liquidmx)      Join Date: Jun 2005       03-03-2009, 12:36 PM Reply   
ab $1500 w/o insurance per brace.
Old    pacifichigh (pacifichigh)      Join Date: Jun 2008       03-03-2009, 1:52 PM Reply   
I went with an off the shelf. I blew out my ACL 10 yrs ago and it was going to be nightmare to get insurance to pay for even part of a knee brace for riding. I paid under $500 direct from a distributor.
Old    Brett Guerin (brett_cti_knee_braces)      Join Date: Feb 2009       03-04-2009, 2:59 PM Reply   
I usually put most of the top guys in a CTi Vapor. The brace is still super strong and it is a bit lighter which helps with reducing migration. Also, make sure to ask for an AMS (anti-migration system) wrap with whichever brace you get. It really keeps the brace locked in place when you are riding. Nothing worse than having to adjust your brace in the middle of a pull. You can get an AMS wrap for both custom CTi's and for CTi OTS (off-the-shelf) braces. For more info, click on the wakeworld CTi banner which will link you to our MySpace page. Later...
Old    B Poser (bbr)      Join Date: Apr 2002       03-04-2009, 4:40 PM Reply   
Brett is the man and the Vapor is the way to go. I have never had to re-adjust my brace once I have it locked in place. You can pretty much set it and forget it. I wouldn't trust any other brace company out there.
Old    M-Dizzle (liquidmx)      Join Date: Jun 2005       03-04-2009, 5:01 PM Reply   
Brett, sent you a pm.
Old    Brent (bfnaci)      Join Date: Dec 2008       03-04-2009, 7:33 PM Reply   
Hi Brett,
I noticed this last weekend that the little plastic piece that locks the movement at 0-5, 5-10, 10-20, 20-30 degrees etc and the little screw that threads into that locking piece are kind of a pain to switch back and forth. Right now it is supposed to be at 10-20 for work outs at PT and walking the dogs off road in the hills.
Wake boarding its supposed to be at 20-30, so the change out is often and going to get more constant as summer comes on and we are wake boarding more often. I feel like the screw could back out and I might lose the plastic piece. I guess back-up pieces and screws might be the answer....
Is there another way to do this or is it, what it is and I just have to deal with it?
Other than this one issue, the brace is awesome. It does not migrate when wet and its easy to forget its even there.

Old    gretchen hammarberg (gretchen)      Join Date: Sep 2005       03-04-2009, 7:38 PM Reply   
I have been riding a CTI knee brace for the past 5 years and wouldn't ride anything different. I use it for preventative purposes on one of my knees. I currently use the Vapor brace with the anti-migration system which helps ensure the braces position on your leg/knee. It never slips and works great in water. Plus is it super light and not bulky and annoying when you are doing different tricks. In my opinion it is also a more "stylish" brace if you are going to have to wear one. It is custom fit to YOUR leg/knee and you have a choice of a lot of different colors. It is well worth the money.
Old    Matthew Melvin (melvinator)      Join Date: Apr 2001       03-05-2009, 8:39 AM Reply   
I must have a funny shaped let because I had 3 custom cti's last summer and they all fit poorly. I don't know if they are worse since ossur took over or what. Has anybody got one since last summer? My first one rubbed me raw and I was bleeding after walking for 20 seconds, the 2nd brace was no better and the 3rd was slightly better. These were all custom braces! I had and ebi alliance brace that I wore out so I wanted to try a cti since everybody says they are great. The quality of the cti brace was horrible, it looked like it was made by a 5 year old. I sent the 3rd one back and they refunded my insurance company. The customer service was great, they were very helpful, I don't know why my experience was so bad??? I went back to ebi, the brace fits way better and the quality is top notch. They are not as cool looking as the cti but I think the support is way better, they are more for motorcross, not lightweight like the vapor. Harf and Lyman have used them if that says anything.Upload
Old    Brett Guerin (brett_cti_knee_braces)      Join Date: Feb 2009       03-05-2009, 10:50 AM Reply   
Brent... your situation is pretty rare. It isn't too often that someone has to adjust the amount of extension control they need. Obviously, the amount of control you need right now is much greater for riding than walking, so your amount of control needs to vary. However, I am pretty sure that you will slowly ween yourself off the brace for your everyday living (like walking off-road, etc) and you will slowly open up your extension control when riding. So, I think your issue will be pretty short lived. Sorry for the temporary inconvenience! We keep it optimized for riding because that is what you will use the brace for the longest and most. When you are back riding like yourself again, I am confident you will be stoked with our decision to keep it streamlined.
The extension control isn't really easy to use for a couple reasons:
1.Doctors set it for you when they order the brace and often don't want the patients to adjust it themselves. Not in all cases- but most.
2.We want to keep the hinge as streamlined as possible to keep the brace lightweight, streamlined and functional. If we start making easy-access adjustable extension control, the hinge and brace start to bulk up. The majority of athletes/patients want it low-profile.
If you do loose any extension control parts - just call our customer service and they will get you taken care of.
Old    Brett Guerin (brett_cti_knee_braces)      Join Date: Feb 2009       03-05-2009, 12:10 PM Reply   
Matthew... that is a bummer that you had a bad experience. Your problem is most likely one of getting bad measurements taken of your leg and not of the product itself. Unfortunately, every territory has different rep groups. Some reps are better than others at measuring - and good measurements are the key to a perfect custom brace. We really do try and only get the best of the best out there representing Ossur. I think you will find your poor experience in the great minority with the huge majority of riders super stoked on how their CTi fit and how well it performed for them. I really feel we have a superior product, so I hate to see someone go with another, but if the EBI works for you... then it works for you... so run it. Good luck and ride safe!
Old    M-Dizzle (liquidmx)      Join Date: Jun 2005       03-06-2009, 12:10 AM Reply   
Yah, thats a bummer Matt. I got both my braces measured from the same place. The first time was a caste type system, the second was a digital image. Technology has come a LONG way and the digital imaging seems to be really accurate.

As far as quality are you referring to the hinge mechanism, straps or materials? I love both my CTI's but my newer CTI is pretty awesome, and the fit and finish is top notch. I know some of the older generations were evolving just like every other brace. Anyways, glad to hear you got a setup that works.
Old    Josh (dillls)      Join Date: Jul 2008       03-06-2009, 7:58 AM Reply   

How snug should the joint pads be on your knee? Mine are fairly snug, but some how re-tore my ACL wearing my CTI pro sport with the AMS playing basketball last week. This was a devastating blow b/c I was 7 1/2 months out of my 1st ACL surgery. I couldn't believe my knee actually buckled wearing the brace. The injury happened when I bumped knees with my opponent. The guy I bumped into said I barely touched his knee and it happened while I was stepping around him, so my leg with reconstructed knee was in the air and not the pivot leg.

My rep I got the brace from was absolutely horrible, and did not know much about the brace. My fear is I was not wearing it properly or was not fitted correctly. How tight should you make the brace? I did read the directions and thought I had it on correctly. Also, how often do you hear of tears while wearing the brace??

Can't wait for another summer of being the boat driver!!

Old    Matthew Melvin (melvinator)      Join Date: Apr 2001       03-06-2009, 9:00 AM Reply   
My first cast was made by the physical therapists office and the 2nd one was done by an ossur rep. The hinge was fine, the straps were ok but the edges of the brace were all rough and raged. It looked like a kid cut it out with a sawzall and rounded some of the edges with an angle grinder, I would have been embarrased to send out a product like that. I believe I sent the brace back to California, maybe thats where you are and can take a look at it???

Correct me if I'm wrong Brett, but I think knee braces are meant for support and not so much to prevent injury. My knee hyperextends too far and I have some instabilities and the brace just supports me and hold my joint together better. If I don't wear it snowboarding/wakeboarding my knee aches so bad I want to cry afterwords!!!
Old    Brett Guerin (brett_cti_knee_braces)      Join Date: Feb 2009       03-06-2009, 12:23 PM Reply   
Hey Josh....
First. The hinge should be comfortably snug. In theory, the tighter the hinge the better the support should be. Obviously, it still needs to be comfortable though or nobody would wear them.
Second. That sounds like a really weird way to blow out your knee. You weren't even weight bearing on it, so I am not sure how it even happened? It sounds like just a weird fluke thing? I can't figure out how a knee could buckle mid-air? A knee brace definitely isn't a guarantee that you won't re-injure yourself, however, your chances are greatly reduced by wearing a brace. Once again, it sounds like you just had a fluke deal. Some guys will have entire careers and never blow out there knees doing the same tricks and having the same falls as another guy that does blow his out. Sometimes you just have one bad landing or one bad twist. The difference between tearing and not tearing can be so small, one degree of angle difference or your weight leaned one way a little more. Brace or no brace, your knee shouldn't have buckled from bumping it against someone else's knee!

You should always feel free to call customer service (800.222.4284) or the rep that measured you if you have any questions. Don't mess around with your knees if you don't feel comfortable. Take the initiative and get the answers. Good luck with your knee. I hope it ends up not being as serious as you suspect.
Old    Brett Guerin (brett_cti_knee_braces)      Join Date: Feb 2009       03-06-2009, 12:53 PM Reply   
The brace is meant to act as an exoskeletal support. It is intended to assist in the stability and correct alignment of the knee (and the 4 major ligaments of the knee - ACL, PCL, LCL & MCL) against damaging forces. Most action sports put a lot of unnatural forces on your knees. For instance, your body wasn't designed to absorb landings from a huge double-up into chop. So, a knee brace helps to absorb these forces by providing additional exoskeletal support to your knee by caging your ligaments in place and providing correct alignment and extension control.
Check out this link for more info on how the CTi works(goto page 6 & 7):
Old    Josh (dillls)      Join Date: Jul 2008       03-06-2009, 1:20 PM Reply   
It baffles me how it happened; b/c there was no weight on my leg. Like I said it was in mid air and I only slightly bumped into the guy’s knee. My rehab schedule was rigorous working it 6 days a week 1 1/2 hours a day. It was definitely a fluke thing.

My MRI came back a little cloudy due to the fact I had surgery less than 8 months ago, so the doc wasn't sure if it was a partial or a full tear. It doesn’t feel as loose as my last tear, but it feels awkward. If I crank the brace down tight I can do most agility drills without it slipping out. I am hoping to be able to ride lightly this summer with the CTI brace, b/c I am not getting the surgery again until next winter. We will see.

My injury was fluke and don’t want to sound like I am knocking CTI. I know for a fact the brace is quality and works b/c how it is holding my knee together with my current tear.

Thanks for your input Brett.
Old    Brett Guerin (brett_cti_knee_braces)      Join Date: Feb 2009       03-06-2009, 2:58 PM Reply   
No worries Josh. Like I said, sometimes weird fluke things happen. One of my pro surfers was about 6 months post-op. Recovery was going insane. He had just called me telling me that he was cruising a longboard and was just about ready to get back on his normal program again. Then, he went to get a glass of milk in the middle of the night and had a tiny little slip, and totally wrecked his knee. It looked worse than when I saw him after his initial injury. It was just one of those bad luck things, a tiny little slip at a slightly funky angle. Total fluke.
Any ways, I know you aren't knocking CTi. I know how many of the boys our product has kept in the game. It isn't going to save everybody every time. However, I will put our results up against any of the other brace companies out there. Just know... we are listening to the riders and honestly doing our best to get you guys products that work and keep you out there doing your thing.
Once again, good luck with your knee and hit me up if you have any questions.

Later Josh.
Old    Gene Williams (gene3x)      Join Date: Apr 2005       03-07-2009, 10:52 AM Reply   
I am in the same boat being 6 months out and will be chosing a brace in the next couple of months. Right now for anything that has impact or strain at all I am using the off the shelf Asterick braces that some of the motorcross guys wear as a preventative. It seems fine but definately can be restricting and uncofortable sometimes.

My muscles are not anywhere near full size yet so I am gonna wait as I appear to be a slow healer and am being somewhat careful, although I have been on a board to crave around and am getting the itch to go inverted already.

If the CTI brace does not fit correctly, how much do those EBI braces cost off of the shelf? (assuming my insurance will not pay)

If insurance does not pay, where would be a good place to get either braces without paying an arm and a leg? pun intended...

If they are not going to provide that much extra support I am just inclined to stay with the Astericks as most docs say a brace is not gonna make a difference under big strain anyway.
Old    Andrea Ensminger (parkgirl)      Join Date: Nov 2001       03-07-2009, 11:25 AM Reply   
You guys have me pretty convinced that CTI braces are very good, and am def. considering one for riding when I'm ready...BUT, how do they compare to DonJoy? I know there have been threads comparing them, so if someone can post a link or give some info. about donjoy that would be great.

I am leaning toward DonJoy beacause I know the rep. personally, but if CTI is better for wakeboarding and high impact sports, it is worth it to me to go in that direction instead.

Thanks and sorry for the thread hi-jack!

(Message edited by parkgirl on March 07, 2009)
Old    np3 (ponder86)      Join Date: Mar 2008       03-07-2009, 12:16 PM Reply   

On your 1 year fit warranty, if the braces are slipping too much and I need to get my leg re-measured do I hold onto the braces I already have until the new ones arrive or do I have to ship those back when I get my legs re-measured?
Old    M-Dizzle (liquidmx)      Join Date: Jun 2005       03-07-2009, 12:26 PM Reply   
Andrea, sent you a pm.
Old    B Poser (bbr)      Join Date: Apr 2002       03-08-2009, 9:29 AM Reply   
A friend of mine had a DonJoy and it was ALWAYS coming undone, or sliding down his leg while he was riding. He personally hated the thing, but got it because it was what the doctor recommended. He now has a CTI and loves it.
Old    Brett Guerin (brett_cti_knee_braces)      Join Date: Feb 2009       03-09-2009, 11:55 AM Reply   
The Asterisk Cell braces you have are a good brace for a retail (non-medical grade) brand. I would stick with those if your insurance won't pay (or you can't afford) a medical grade brace. }
Old    michaelspsp (michaelspsp)      Join Date: Sep 2007       03-09-2009, 12:43 PM Reply   
Andrea, i have a donjoy, and it slips no matter what i do.
Old    Brett Guerin (brett_cti_knee_braces)      Join Date: Feb 2009       03-09-2009, 12:57 PM Reply   
There are several significant design differences between CTi and DonJoy. A DJ brace has a rigid component that goes around the belly of your calf (an area that has a huge size fluctuation of expansion/contraction as your calf fires) and a strap that goes in the front over your tibia. This rigid component over the calf can cause pinching/cramping and, more importantly, can cause the brace to migrate down the leg as your calf fires. The CTi's rigid component locks down on your tibia (an are that has very little movement or expansion) and has a strap that goes around calf. The tibia is very stable, so the brace can really lock down there and not shift around. Just straps in the back, so when you land something in deep flexion (squat) there is nothing to pinch. The differences go on and on...
Old    Brett Guerin (brett_cti_knee_braces)      Join Date: Feb 2009       03-09-2009, 1:02 PM Reply   
It depends on if they are going to re-make your brace, or if they are just going to make an adjustment to it. Our customer service dept. can give you more specifics (800.222.4284). Also, ask for an AMS wrap. They really help reduce slippage.
Old    Gene Williams (gene3x)      Join Date: Apr 2005       03-09-2009, 1:11 PM Reply   
Brett, thanks for your no BS real world answer! And for your willingness to answer everyone's questions. If insurance does pay and I am able to go with the CTi, Should I go with the standard? I am not concerned about weight of the brace really because I weigh 220lbs anyway.
Old    Andrea Ensminger (parkgirl)      Join Date: Nov 2001       03-09-2009, 2:46 PM Reply   
Thanks Brett, that's exactly the kind of differences I'm looking for when comparing the two. From my research thus far, it seems like CTI is more innovative in accomodating wake/snow needs.

Does CTI have a women's specific model? And do you think you could PM me the Nor-Cal rep's contact info.?
Old    Brett Guerin (brett_cti_knee_braces)      Join Date: Feb 2009       03-09-2009, 3:04 PM Reply   
At 220lbs I would suggest the standard CTi. You could probably get away with a Vapor CTi, but why risk it. A Pro-Sport CTi would be overkill for wakeboarding.

Obviously, I work for Ossur so I am on here pumping CTi. That being said, I honestly believe that we have the best product. I wouldn't put my friends (whose careers depend on it) in our products if I didn't really believe in them myself. I wouldn't want someone to BS me when it came to my knees and my health. So, I am here to shoot people straight. Is bracing a guarantee... NO! Is there going to be issues with our product sometimes.... YES!
I wouldn't put myself out here and our product susceptible to negative comments and questions if I wasn't confident in it as the best option. I am here answering questions directly and honestly... just like what I would want.
Old    David (colombiansurfer)      Join Date: Sep 2008       03-10-2009, 6:20 PM Reply   
Great topic! Brett, I am here at Duke Medical Center right now, just went knee surgery where they took out a tumor and part of my muscle. With that being said the doc told me that I might blow out my knee if I do not get any support brace because what all they took out. I wake, surf, motocross and mountain bike. Which brace do you think is the best option for myself? BTW, sorry for any grammar errors. Oxy C ispowerful meds.
Old    Kat Laird (wakekat15)      Join Date: Jul 2005       03-10-2009, 6:41 PM Reply   
I'm a big CTi fan, as I had the DonJoy and was always pulling it back up while riding.

Andrea - not sure if they still do, but mine was a womens' specific called the CTi Aspire.

Gene - your chances of the insurance paying are pretty good if your Doc is willing to write the prescription!
Old    Kat Laird (wakekat15)      Join Date: Jul 2005       03-10-2009, 6:48 PM Reply   
David...BEST of luck in your recovery!!
Old    michaelspsp (michaelspsp)      Join Date: Sep 2007       03-10-2009, 6:52 PM Reply   
brett, that is exactly what happens with my dj on my calf. and i think i hurt my knee more when i landed toeside once when the brace moved because of it...i will be paying out of pocket for my CTi this spring. what is the difference of the standard to the prosport? and thanks for answering these questions
Old    Brett Guerin (brett_cti_knee_braces)      Join Date: Feb 2009       03-11-2009, 11:48 AM Reply   

Because you are going to ride a dirtbike, I would probably suggest a Standard CTi instead of a Vapor. With the loss of that muscle, you don't want to risk injuring your ligaments and remaining muscles to save on a couple ounces of weight.
Good luck on your recovery!
Old    Brett Guerin (brett_cti_knee_braces)      Join Date: Feb 2009       03-11-2009, 12:02 PM Reply   

The difference between a Pro Sport and Standard is the amount of carbon fiber in the brace. Basically, I rarely put any athletes in a Pro Sport unless they are a down lineman or someone 225+ and riding a dirtbike. It is our strongest/most rigid brace - but I feel our Vapor and Standard are a better balance of strength and weight.
Old    michaelspsp (michaelspsp)      Join Date: Sep 2007       03-11-2009, 5:44 PM Reply   
thanks Brett!


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