I don't understand how Donjoy's offering a refund of about the purchase price of the brace amounts to "paying for the surgery."
And read clinical studies. The only time that a knee brace significantly stabilizes the knee is when the knee is in a stationary
, partially flexed, weight-bearing position (i.e. a position of standing perfectly still, facing straight forward), subject to unilateral stress. Moreover, studies have been conducted that conclusively show that knee braces are ineffective under athletic conditions (i.e. any condition under which you'd hope for your brace to help you).
You might say: "but if that's true, why does DonJoy have enough confidence in their product to offer to pay for your surgery if you get hurt again?" The answer is that they don't. They have confidence in knee injury statistics and an elementary understanding of expectation. Note that they are not paying for surgery, they are giving a refund ($1000) in the case that the ACL is re-injured within 12 months of the purchase (which is a maximum of 18 months from the original surgery, per terms and conditions).
In the unusual event that they "pay for surgery," all they're doing is giving back money that they received from you (or your insurance company) in the first place. You have to ship the brace back to them, and they can reuse its components. Thus, their net loss on "paying for somebody's surgery" is zero. Moreover, the net effect on the brace user is zero: you (or your insurance, but much more likely you) paid ~$1000 for a piece of garbage to attach to your leg. And you got $1000 back. -$1000 + $1000 = DonJoy didn't pay for a fucking dime of your surgery.
Anyway, DonJoy knows that by offering this guarantee, they're not paying for shit, and they're not losing any money when the brace "fails" (as if it was meant/believed to do anything in the first place). But thanks to years of knee-injury research, they have a very good idea of how many braces they can expect to give refunds for. This is just figured into DonJoy's marketing budget. And, given how minimal the actual loss is (if it even is a loss at all, I think that the retail price of a Defiance brace is $1200), they can sustain it many more times than expected and still consider it to be driving profits (because it gets more idiots to buy the brace than would without the "gurantee"), rather than diminishing them.
DonJoy won't pay for your surgery. And the Knee Guarantee is not a guarantee, it's a gimmick. When you're on your way home from picking up your knee brace, remember to renew the extended warranties for your car and all your electronics. If your car breaks down, or your iPod shorts out, they'll buy you a new one1.
1. Subject to terms and conditions*.
*HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA .