PATIENT INSTRUCTIONS FOR WEARING YOUR BODY JACKET
A body jacket is a rigid brace ordered by your doctor to protect and immobilize your spine. Your body jacket will be custom designed to fit your body as snugly as possible. Your doctor will tell you how long to wear your body jacket.
Putting On Your Jacket
You will need to position the jacket properly. Log roll on your side and place the back half the jacket parallel to your back, then roll into the back half of the jacket. Once this is in the proper position, lay the front half on your chest and attach with the velcro straps snugly. The side edges should overlap by at least one inch.
Proper Fit and Placement
To test for proper placement, position the indentations on the side of the body jacket, above the hip bones and just below the ribs or in a line with the belly button. The front edge of the jacket will come very low in front and press slightly on top of your legs when sitting. The bottom back of the jacket will be approximately one inch above the sitting surface.
Children may need several brace changes as they grow or gain weight. Minor adjustments can be made to the brace to accommodate growth for about 1-2 years.
Skin Care Information
Preventing Skin Problems
Check your skin thoroughly under the jacket especially over bony areas for any red or irritated spots every day. Skin irritations may occur from moisture and bacteria on the skin or if the jacket is not positioned properly. Always wear a clean, dry, well-fitting 100% cotton T-shirt. Avoid having wrinkles in the fabric by folding the excess over the stomach area.
Wiping the skin with alcohol wipes will help reduce moisture and bacteria on the skin under the jacket. Powder and cornstarch may also be beneficial, but too much can cake up and cause problems.
Ask your doctor for bathing instructions and precautions. Remember, if you get the jacket wet, it must be completely dry before you put it back on or skin irritation may result.
Chaffing or Pressure Spots
If you see a red area that does not go away in 20 minutes after brace removal, it could mean that either the jacket is too loose or too tight. Check the position and tightness of your jacket. If the problem persists after the brace has been repositioned, you may need to contact your orthotist.
Caring for Your Orthosis
If the body jacket causes a rash or skin irritation, it may be due to heat, perspiration, or laundry detergent. Try changing the T-shirt more often and keeping the area clean and dry.
Cleaning your Jacket
Use an antibacterial soap and water to clean your body jacket. Make sure the jacket is thoroughly dry before you put it back on. Rubbing alcohol may be used to wipe the jacket to help destroy bacteria that may be present and to remove soap residue.
Never attempt to repair or adjust your body jacket yourself. If you are experiencing any problems or have questions regarding your body jacket, please contact your practitioner. Nobbe Orthopedics will work closely with you and your physician to ensure the best orthotic treatment possible.
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