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How the X4 Smart Brace from DonJoy Revolutionizes Patient-Physician Communication After Knee Replacement Surgery

Knee injury

DonJoy, an innovative, leading provider of medical bracing and supports, made an exciting announcement on March 7th, 2018: the launch of their new X4 Smart Brace. This device will revolutionize recovery for patients of knee replacement surgery and introduce a new era of medical technology.


Introducing the X4 Smart Brace

The X4 Smart Brace features Motion Intelligence. Doctors can utilize this new technology to monitor total knee arthroplasty patients in real time with the cloud-based remote patient monitoring solution. The digitally connected X4 Smart Brace with Motion Intelligence does this by enabling physicians and patients to connect by recording and transferring patient data via the app to the reviewing physician. The X4 Smart Brace provides support for the recovering knee, and the Motion Intelligence allows the patient to be supported throughout the process on a personal basis with their physician. The X4 Smart Brace allows patients to experience a continuum of care like never before. For the first time, medical professionals can track the recovering knee’s range of motion and rehabilitation compliance all from the comfort of a patient’s own home.

Interview with Kevin Brothen, VP Marketing Bracing and Support at DJO Global

I had the privilege of conducting an interview with Kevin Brothen, VP Marketing Bracing and Support at DJO Global, regarding the X4 Smart Brace. He introduced the brace at the American Association of Orthopedic Surgeons (AAOS) in New Orleans in March of 2018.

Kaitlin: Your company has certainly provided many groundbreaking and innovative medical technologies to help patients retain their natural motion. What inspired you personally to pursue a career in medical technology?

Kevin Brothen: DJO has been a market leader for a very longtime, producing innovative products that help patients retain their normal activities. Additionally, we have helped people heal from injuries, aided in recovery during post-operative rehabilitation, and DJO has helped athletes perform at peak performance levels. Personally, I have always been interested in anatomy, kinesiology and the human body. I have been in orthopedics for over 20 years and the opportunity to be associated with DJO and cover all areas of orthopedics is what attracted me to this company. 

Kaitlin: Could the technology be adapted to suit the needs of patients whose sight and hearing are compromised or have other physical disabilities?

Kevin Brothen: The X4 Smart Brace, powered by Motion Intelligence, has already been configured for those that are hearing impaired, and would have 100% utilization of the system. Those people with vision loss would have the ability to utilize the most important aspects of the X4 Smart Brace.
Kaitlin: Can the patient access the Motion Intelligence app from any OS?

Kevin Brothen: The initial launch of the X4 Smart Brace can be utilized with an iPhone or iPad, and then 90 days later, with Android devices. 
Kaitlin: Is there evidence that the X4 Smart Brace speeds up the healing process for patients recovering from reconstructive knee surgery?

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Kevin Brothen: The purpose of the X4 Smart Brace is to aid in recovery by monitoring the progress of the patient's range of motion, exercise compliance, step count, activity levels, pain scores, and ultimately the goal is to improve outcomes of a very large volume procedure. Additionally, the Motion Intelligence system will help both the patient and clinician feel better connected to mitigate any risk, and provide added confidence during post operative total knee rehabilitation. 

Kaitlin: Where do you see this innovative Motion Intelligence technology heading beyond reconstructive knee surgery rehabilitation? Could you please give us some other examples of how this technology would benefit patients in the future?

Kevin Brothen: In addition to the knee, DJO produces and provides braces and supports for many different areas of the body, including foot/ankle, shoulder, hand/wrist, and upper/lower spine, to name a few. The X4 Smart Brace is only the beginning for DJO, on a quest to provide products that POWER MOTION!

Specific Features of the X4 Smart Brace with Motion Intelligence

DJO’s latest breakthrough in medical technology combines the following features for maximum efficiency and effectiveness. This is what DJO has to say about their X4 Smart Brace’s features:

  • X4 Smart Brace: Features a comfortable, anatomical design with malleable aluminum hinges for support and adaptability to different leg shapes.
  • Motion Intelligence 360 Sensor: (embedded in the X4 Knee Brace): Enables on-demand monitoring of patients’ rehabilitation progress (range of motion), as well as exercise and activity levels (daily step count).
  • Motion Intelligence App: With the easy-to-use app, patients can track rehabilitation goals, view daily exercises, record pain levels, and communicate directly with healthcare providers.
  • Physician Portal: Gives providers access to patient information via an intuitive dashboard that monitors and tracks patient information and integrates EMR/PM and surgical site photos.

“The DJO team is committed to helping patients realize the health benefits of motion and regular physical activity. With literal support throughout the continuum of care, we are proud to help patients and physicians truly work as a team, getting patients back to the activities they enjoy and the good health they deserve as quickly and safely as possible after total knee replacement.” - Kevin Brothen.

Reconstructive Knee Surgery Statistics in the United States

There is a grave need for total knee replacement solutions as more than 600,000 reconstructive knee surgeries are performed each year in the United States alone, according to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. The aging population is climbing. As senior citizens remain in the workforce longer than previous generations, the demand for total knee replacement surgery is expected to exceed 3 million by the year 2030. In addition to this startling statistic, one out of every two Americans will experience symptoms of knee osteoarthritis (OA) according to the CDC.


The X4 Smart Brace will revolutionize communication between patient and physician after total knee procedures to ensure complete recovery and rehabilitation. For the first time, patients everywhere will receive insightful, quality care from the comfort of their own home following total knee procedures. As we learned from DonJoy's Kevin Brothen, the Motion Intelligence feature shows remarkable promise for treating various other medical conditions as well. To learn more about DJO’s innovative medical technology and the X4 Smart Brace with Motion Intelligence, please visit their website by clicking here.

Disclosure: While DonJoy's PR company is one of eMaxHealth's occasional sponsors, the reporter had complete editorial freedom covering this story.