How effective are braces or other orthopedic devices in treating dystonia?

Generally, braces and orthotics are not effective in treating dystonia. Individuals who have dystonia and spasticity may benefit from orthotics or braces to help support weak or compensating body parts or guard against joint deformity. However, most people with primary dystonia, especially those with limb or trunk dystonia, will continue to have the spasms and abnormal postures regardless of using a brace. In fact, the brace often makes the situation even more uncomfortable because the spasms twist the affected part against or into the brace. Some people with cervical dystonia find a soft cervical collar helps gently maintain the position of the neck.

This content originally appeared on the Dystonia Medical Research Foundation website at

Continue Learning about Dystonia


When your muscles contract involuntarily, the condition is called dystonia. Dystonia causes a twisting or clenching of whatever body part is affected. For example, when you have a stroke, the affected arm and hand may be clenched ...

and held in a strange position. Dystonia can be very mild or very severe. It can make your life very difficult and this can lead to frustration, depression or anxiety. See your doctor to treat your symptoms and talk over your frustrations.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.