Modular Hip Distractor


Project ID: TECH-2023-10

Hip arthroscopy is a minimally invasive surgical technique involving the insertion of specialized instruments through small incisions into the hip joint. This approach is commonly employed to address various hip-related issues including femoroacetabular impingement (FAI), labral tears, and the extraction of loose bodies within the joint. A critical aspect of this procedure is the distraction of the hip joint which is achieved by applying traction to create a gap between the femoral head and the acetabulum, thereby allowing sufficient space for the surgeon to visualize and access the surgical site effectively. Traditional hip distractors facilitate this by securing the patient’s foot in a boot attachment and using a perineal post against the groin as an anchor point during traction. Post-operative complications associated with the arthroscopy procedures commonly stem from this traction applied during surgery and include increased pain and knee joint instability, especially prevalent in patients with existing joint pathologies or joint laxity. With the rising frequency of hip arthroscopic procedures, is it imperative to safeguard patients' joints intraoperatively and prevent additional complications. 

Invention Description
Researchers at the University of Toledo have developed a modular hip distractor with a knee brace to be used during hip arthroscopic procedures to reduce the force applied to the knee joint during traction. The knee brace can be positioned around a patient’s lower thigh, entire knee, and/or upper calf, and can result in adequate hip distraction being achieved with lower traction forces on the knee joint. A specialized mesh  brace optimizes contact with the patient’s skin to prevent slippage of the knee brace as traction is applied to the patient’s leg. The knee brace, which can be in the form of an assembly divided into upper/thigh and lower/calf portions, can be attached to the same leg support member that runs longitudinally with the patient’s leg and connects to the boot holding the patient’s ipsilateral foot. The knee brace is part of a modular system with components that can be added and removed easily for the desired application. Whereas conventional hip distractor systems seek to control the range of motion of the affected limb, the modular hip distractor described herein is configured to effectively distribute the traction force along the lower extremity while reducing force at the knee during hip arthroscopic surgery.


Novel, customizable, modular hip distractor that protects knees during hip arthroscopic surgery.

-    Reduces force applied to the knee joints during hip arthroscopic surgery.
-    Achieves better rates of tractions by having a wide range of mesh-rigid knee brace attachment.
-    Prevents patient knee brace slippage as tractions is applied and monitors force and pressure applied continuously.
-    Knee brace is part of modular system that can be modified to achieve desired applications.

Patent Status: Patent Pending

Patent Information:
Medical Device
For Information, Contact:
Yuriy Yatskiv
Licensing Associate
The University of Toledo
Sophia Soehnlen
Italia Fernandez
Benjamin Bisesi
Avik Mukherjee
David Sohn
Yogesh Kumaran