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Using Your Jewett Spinal Orthosis (Brace) at Home (5394)

Using Your Jewett Spinal Orthosis (Brace) at Home (5394) - Clinical Hub, Patient Education, Health and Nutrition Facts For You, Neuro, Rehab


Using Your Jewett Spinal Orthosis (Brace) at Home


Your Jewett Hyperextension Spinal Orthosis
helps control and support your spinal
posture, helps reduce pain, prevents further
injury and promotes healing. It will remind
you to keep your back upright and straight.
It is often prescribed for the treatment of
compression fractures or fractures on the
front side of the spine.

Wearing your Jewett

The Jewett brace will keep you from
bending forward. It should be
uncomfortable when you begin moving into
positions you should avoid. You should be
able to do many normal activities by
yourself or with a little help from caregivers
or special tools. Ask your doctor or
Occupational Therapist for detailed

Preparing for your trip home

Arrange for someone to drive you home.
Bend at your hips and knees, but not your
back when getting into and out of a car,
sitting, or standing. To relieve pressure
from the front pads when sitting, try leaning
back over a firm pillow, towel, or blanket
behind the back pad of your Jewett or sit in a
reclining chair. Do not loosen the Jewett

Taking off your Jewett

You must wear your Jewett as ordered by
your doctor. To remove it, lie down and
open the straps. While the Jewett is open or
off, be careful not to twist or bend your

1. Log roll onto your side.
2. Flip open latch on left side.
3. Roll to your back.
4. Open the keyhole latch on the
right side and open brace like a

Have a helper slide the brace out from under

Putting on your Jewett

Always wear the Jewett orthosis over a
clean, dry T-shirt. Put on your Jewett while
lying down. Roll onto the back pad and
strap without twisting or bending your back
(you may need help from a caregiver). You
may also have a helper slide the back pad
under you while you are lying on your back.

To close the straps, insert the right side
“keyhole” shaped piece over the peg and
pull to tighten (slip the bigger end of the
hole over the peg, then pull to engage the
smaller part of the hole). Then close the
brace like a book over the front of your
body. Flip the latch on the other side to
make it snug. You do not have to adjust the
strap each time. Close the strap snugly so
the Jewett controls your back movement.
Be sure the clear sliding pads are under the
straps so the straps don’t dig into your sides.
If the Jewett “rides up” or twists out of
position, it is too loose. For the Jewett to
support and protect your spine in the proper
manner, it must be worn very tight.

If this method is difficult for you try this:

1. Move to the side of your bed.
ξ Use your arms and legs to move your
hips over, or
ξ Have a caregiver pull the sheet under
you over to one side.

2. Roll to the opposite side of the bed
almost onto your stomach.
ξ Bend both legs by sliding your heels
toward your buttocks.
ξ Push with your heels and roll onto
your side. Do not twist! Roll like a

3. Your caregiver should position the front
half of the brace with you lying on your
side. Make sure the upper pad is across
your breastbone or sternum and the
lower pad is across the front of your
lower trunk or pubic bone.

4. Next, position the back of the brace
around to your back or slide it under the
side of your body.

5. Hold the pieces of your brace in place
and log roll onto your back.

6. Attach the front and back pieces of the
brace together.
ξ Pull the latch out and down into the
ξ Tighten the latch until the brace feels
ξ Check to see that the brace is aligned
before getting up. Adjust if needed.


If your doctor has told you to wear your
Jewett at all times when standing or sitting,
you can wear the Jewett in the shower or
have sponge baths while lying on your bed
without the brace. If you cannot wash and
dry under pads of the Jewett while wearing
it, you will need to lie on your bed and
remove the Jewett for a short time. Be
careful not to twist or bend your back while
the Jewett is off. After your skin and the
pads are all dry, put on a T-shirt and apply
the Jewett snugly before sitting or standing.
The Jewett may be worn with wet straps or
you can dry the straps with a hair dryer set
on low.

If your doctor allows you to shower without
the Jewett, remove it just before starting the
water and put it on again as soon as you dry
off. While the Jewett is off, be careful not to
twist or bend your back. This option is
ONLY for patients who have their doctor’s

Sleeping in the Jewett

Your doctor will tell you if you should wear
your Jewett while sleeping or lying down.
Your doctor may change these instructions
during your course of treatment based on
changes in your condition. If you are
allowed to remove the Jewett while
sleeping, be sure to put it on before you get
up. If you need to go to the bathroom
during the night, it may be easier to keep the
brace on.

Cleaning the outside of your Jewett

Wipe off the outside with a damp or soapy
cloth, and then dry. The straps can air dry
while the Jewett is being worn. The hook
fastener will hold best if all the lint is

Cleaning the inside of your Jewett

When your Jewett is removed for your bath,
wipe the inside with a damp cloth. If you
prefer, you may also use a mild soap that
you would use on your skin. Rinse the soap
from the Jewett and dry the entire inside
before you put it on again.

How long do I need to wear the Jewett?

Your doctor will decide how long you need
to wear your Jewett. Be sure to follow your
doctor’s advice, even if you feel better and
would like to stop wearing it sooner. Your
doctor will be checking your progress and
will decide what is in your best long-term

Things to Remember

Do not expect to be able to move in all
directions or sit in all types of chairs. The
brace is designed to limit certain motions
and positions.

If you have redness in certain spots or
around your brace, call your orthotist, the
person who made or fit your brace. They can
make changes to your brace so it will not
rub. Redness over a large area of skin or
pink skin is normal.

What should I do if my neurological
symptoms get worse?

If you have more numbness, tingling, pain
or are less able to move or do daily
activities, call

Patients of the Neurosurgery Clinic:
(608) 263-1410

Patients of the Orthopedic Rehabilitation
Spine Clinic: (608) 265-3207

After hours, nights, weekends, and holidays,
this will give you the paging operator. Ask
for the resident on call for your clinic.
Leave your name and phone number with
the area code. The doctor will call you

If you live out of the area, please call:
1-800-323-8942 and ask for your clinic.

What if the brace needs adjusting once I
am out of the hospital?

UW Health Orthotics Clinic:
(608) 263-0583 to schedule an appointment.

Your health care team may have given you this information as part of your care. If so, please use it and call if you
have any questions. If this information was not given to you as part of your care, please check with your doctor. This
is not medical advice. This is not to be used for diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. Because each
person’s health needs are different, you should talk with your doctor or others on your health care team when using
this information. If you have an emergency, please call 911. Copyright © 9/2016 University of Wisconsin Hospitals
and Clinics Authority. All rights reserved. Produced by the Department of Nursing HF#5394.