Care for Wearers of a Jewett Brace
A Jewett Brace is used to keep the spine in proper position while it is healing from surgery or injury. It prevents the client from bending forward. On average, most people wear the brace for 6 to 12 weeks.
1. Move the wearer to the side of their bed. Position the front half of the brace while the wearer is on their back. The upper pad is 3 fingers lower than the sternal notch.
2. With the wearer holding the front half of the brace, roll them, with knees bent and pillow between knees, towards the center of the bed. DO NOT let the wearer twist at the waist. Roll, like a log, and keep their back straight (roll their chest, pelvis and legs all at the same time).
3. Position the back pad of the brace around the wearer’s back and slide the buckle end under the opposite side of their body.
4. With the wearer holding the brace in position, log roll them onto their back.
5. Pull the strap from the back piece and latch the plastic piece over the screw, to lock it in place. Close lever on the wearer’s left side to tighten the brace.
Checking the Fit
- Shoulders, trunk and hips should be in a neutral position
- The brace should appear level and symmetrical
- The brace should be snug on the wearer’s body
Help Getting Out of Bed
1. Log roll the wearer onto their side.
2. Drop the wearer’s legs over the side of their bed and assist.
Help Getting Into Bed
1. Assist the wearer into sitting position, leaning onto elbow and forearm on one side.
2. Lift the wearer’s legs onto bed, staying in the side-lying position.
3. Log roll the wearer onto their back.
Washing & Skin Care
Pressure, moisture, heat and dirt can lead to redness and soreness of your skin. To avoid skin breakdown, keep the wearer’s skin clean, dry, and cool. If redness is noticed (that remains even after the brace has been off for 10-15 minutes) or skin breakdown, alert the Orthotist.
At least once a day, remove the brace for cleaning. If there are instructions to wear the brace at all times, the wearer may remove it once daily to clean the brace and wash the skin.
1. Prior to taking off the brace, gather necessary supplies: washbasin, soap, washcloth, and dry towels.
2. Remove the brace as instructed.
3. While washing the wearer’s skin, keep their trunk and hips straight and still. To wash their back, a log roll may be needed.
4. Put the brace back on as instructed.
Cleaning the Brace
The brace may be washed with mild soap and water. Rinse and towel dry the brace before wearing it again.
Things to Remember
- The wearer should not expect to be able to move in all directions or sit in all chairs. The brace is made to limit some motions and positions.
- Slightly reddened areas on the skin, near or under the brace, are normal for many people. If redness does not dissipate after 10-15 minutes, the Orthotist may be called for adjustments.
- The wearer should avoid using creams, lotions, or oils on the skin near the brace.
- Any other problems or questions should be referred to the Orthotist, Nurse, Physiotherapist, or Occupational Therapist.