Equipment meant to be used for therapeutic purposes is referred to as durable medical equipment (DME). This is equipment designed for long-term use. We offer an assortment of durable medical equipment that can help people with chronic pain injuries or disorders minimize or eliminate pain. DME used for this purpose provides support to specific areas and reduces mechanical stress.
What Durable Medical Equipment Does
DME used for chronic pain purposes minimize stress on tissues, joints, and bones as much as possible while promoting healing. Some patients wear such devices while healing from a sports injury or to improve posture and spinal alignment. Others individuals use DME to take pressure off of certain muscles or muscle groups that may be contributing to pain, as may be the case for patients with chronic pain linked to prolonged stress on one area of the body.
Supportive equipment also minimizes movements in the affected area. A patient who has pain from a herniated disc that’s triggered by certain movements, for example, could benefit from a lumbar (lower back) support device. Durable medical equipment may provide relief or added support for patients experiencing discomfort related to:
- Muscles spasms or muscle tears
- Knee ligament tears
- Non-specific low back pain
- Sprains and strains
- Over-extension and repetitive motion injuries
Braces are a common form of durable medical equipment available in a variety of shapes and sizes. The type of brace a patient needs will depend on the nature of the pain, what’s likely triggering it, and the extent of the discomfort experienced with a chronic pain condition or injury. For instance, patients with scoliosis may wear a brace to prevent curvature of the spine from getting worse.
The most common type of braces used to limit motion around the spine are rigid braces and corset (elastic) braces. Designed to limit motion up to 50 percent or more, harder braces may be recommended for patients with fractures or for those recovering from fusion surgery. Elastic or corset braces limit motion while still allowing for some type of movement in the area where the brace is being worn. Such braces may be worn by people who need extra support to perform work-related tasks that involve lifting
Some durable medical equipment will be used on a temporary basis until tissues in the affected area heal while other DME may be used on an ongoing basis as needed. DME can be also worn at different times throughout the day, only when certain movements are being made, or all day except for when showering and sleeping. Patients are usually given a specific wearing schedule by their doctor. It’s important for wearers to follow specific instructions for care and use of supportive equipment, especially for DME that will be frequently taken off and on.
A prescription from a licensed healthcare provider is required in order to purchase durable medical equipment. Having doctor input prior to using DME also allows patients to choose therapeutic equipment that will likely be safe, comfortable, and supportive. DME isn’t a cure for chronic pain since the underlying problem will still be there. However, use of DME may provide enough support to allow patients to respond better to other treatments and therapies. We offer a wide range of DME for sports injuries and many other chronic pain injuries and conditions. Our staff will help you find the right product(s) for your needs.