dj Orthopedics Introduces the First Soft Shoulder Brace to Incorporate 'External Rotation' Benefit - New Research in Shoulder Dislocation Suggests Positioning is Critical to Successful Healing

October 24, 2003

SAN DIEGO, Oct 24, 2003 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX/ -- dj Orthopedics, Inc. (NYSE: DJO), a designer, manufacturer, and marketer of products and services for the orthopedic sports medicine market, today announced the introduction of the UltraSling® ER (External Rotation) shoulder brace. The UltraSling ER is the first soft shoulder brace designed
specifically to position the shoulder joint in an improved position to promote healing following traumatic shoulder dislocation or shoulder surgery. The brace supports the shoulder joint by positioning the elbow against the hip/rib area with the forearm rotated slightly outward, or externally rotated. External rotation has been clinically shown to reduce the potential for recurrent
shoulder dislocation.

The new shoulder rehabilitation research was conducted by Eiji Itoi, MD, at the Akita University School of Medicine in Japan and presented at the 2003 American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons meeting in New Orleans. It demonstrated that patients treated through the external rotation protocol experienced significantly reduced recurrence rates of anterior shoulder dislocations. In Dr. Itoi's treatment population, the recurrence rate was zero percent for the external rotation patients, compared to 30 percent for the traditionally treated (internal rotation) patients. In previous studies, traditional internal immobilization has shown dislocation recurrence rates of between 47 percent and 100 percent. This new study supports the findings Dr. Itoi presented in The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery in May, 2001. He demonstrated that by rotating the shoulder externally, the front/anterior shoulder structures are tightened, and that this tension then forces the damaged and displaced shoulder joint structures back into position, which is believed to prohibit the development of a hematoma in the shoulder joint. Dr. Itoi believes the formation of a hematoma is responsible for poor clinical results observed with traditional shoulder dislocation treatment.

"Dr. Itoi's findings have generated considerable interest in the orthopedics community, prompting our development of the UltraSling ER," said Les Cross, dj Orthopedics' President and CEO. "dj Orthopedics is committed to tracking the significant trends in orthopedics research and then rapidly developing and launching new products that benefit both physicians and patients. The UltraSling ER reflects that commitment."

With the introduction of the UltraSling ER, dj Orthopedics is better positioned to meet the needs of the growing shoulder market. The use of minimally-invasive arthroscopic surgery for treating shoulder problems is becoming more common, and until recently, diagnostic and surgical techniques had not developed to the point where arthroscopic shoulder surgery was feasible for most patients. With the new instrumentation and techniques now available, an increasing the number of orthopedic surgeons are specializing in shoulder problems, driving the growth of the total shoulder market, which includes rigid and soft bracing products. According to the Orthopedic Physician Census conducted by the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, the percentage of U.S. orthopedists specializing in elbow and shoulder increased from 12.1 percent in 1990 to 16.5 percent by 2000. The number of outpatient arthroscopy/soft tissue repair procedures performed on the shoulder increased from 238,000 in 1999 to 289,000 in 2001.

The UltraSling ER was developed in collaboration with Stephen Snyder, MD, of the Southern California Orthopedic Institute and Eric McCarty, MD, of the University of Colorado School of Medicine and is available in both 15- and 30-degree versions consisting of a comfortable wedged pillow and a special shoulder strap. The wedged pillow positions the shoulder appropriately, while the shoulder strap keeps it in place. The brace is available in three sizes and comes in left and right versions to meet the needs of the physician. An educational CD is available containing an interview with Drs. Snyder and McCarty on the use of the DonJoy UltraSling ER. For more information or a copy of the CD and brochure, please call 1-800-336-6569 or visit us at .

About dj Orthopedics

dj Orthopedics is a global orthopedic sports medicine company specializing in the design, manufacture and marketing of products and services that rehabilitate soft tissue and bone, help protect against injury and treat osteoarthritis of the knee. Its broad range of over 600 existing products, many of which are based on proprietary technologies, includes rigid knee braces,
soft goods, specialty and other complementary orthopedic products. These products provide solutions for patients and orthopedic sports medicine professionals throughout the patient's continuum of care.

SOURCE dj Orthopedics, Inc.

Company Investor/Media Contact:
DJO Incorporated
Mark Francois
Director of Corporate Communications & Investor Relations