The Milwaukee Brace is commonly used for high thoracic (mid-back) curves. It extends from the neck to the pelvis and consists of a specially contoured plastic pelvic girdle and a neck ring connected by metal bars in the front and the back of the brace. The metal bars help extend the length of the torso and the neck ring keeps the head centered over the pelvis. Pressure pads, strategically placed according to the patient's curve pattern, are attached to the metal bars with straps.
The Milwaukee Brace was the first modern brace designed for the treatment of scoliosis. Developed by Drs. Walter Blount and Albert Schmidt of the Medical College of Wisconsin and Milwaukee's Children's Hospital in 1945, its design has been tweaked through the years until reaching its current design around 1975. Today, the brace is used less frequently now that more form-fitting plastic braces have been developed; however, it's still prescribed for some types of curves that are located very high in the spine.