Footdrop

Nebulous

Veteran
Location
Aberdeen
Does anyone have or have any advice on footdrop?

Apparently it is caused by damage to a nerve which runs close to the knee.

In 2014 I was hit by a car and took some damage to my left knee. Sometime after that I was aware that I was having trouble controlling my left foot. It would slap the ground as I walked, particularly when I was tired. My wife commented on it a few times, noticing the noise it was making. At one point I thought I might have had a stroke.

There’s a muscle in the front of your lower leg, called the anterior tibialis. My one on my right leg is well-developed, which isn’t a surprise giving the cycling I do, but the one on the left leg pretty much doesn’t exist. Having ignored it for years, I’ve now decided I have footdrop.

I’m assuming that it is too late to do anything about it. If the nerve was damaged years ago and the muscle has atrophied, it is likely to be too late. I do get some intermittent issues with my knee and ankle, possibly because of a muscle imbalance, so I’d welcome any opinions or thoughts, if I could do anything, or if I should continue to ignore it.
 

vickster

Legendary Member
Does anyone have or have any advice on footdrop?

Apparently it is caused by damage to a nerve which runs close to the knee.

In 2014 I was hit by a car and took some damage to my left knee. Sometime after that I was aware that I was having trouble controlling my left foot. It would slap the ground as I walked, particularly when I was tired. My wife commented on it a few times, noticing the noise it was making. At one point I thought I might have had a stroke.

There’s a muscle in the front of your lower leg, called the anterior tibialis. My one on my right leg is well-developed, which isn’t a surprise giving the cycling I do, but the one on the left leg pretty much doesn’t exist. Having ignored it for years, I’ve now decided I have footdrop.

I’m assuming that it is too late to do anything about it. If the nerve was damaged years ago and the muscle has atrophied, it is likely to be too late. I do get some intermittent issues with my knee and ankle, possibly because of a muscle imbalance, so I’d welcome any opinions or thoughts, if I could do anything, or if I should continue to ignore it.
See a physio?
Or a doctor and get referred for nerve conduction studies?
https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/foot-drop/
 
I had a prolapse of L4/L5 on my left side 4 years ago. I was in agony for 2 weeks but my chiropractor did a great job and, touch wood, haven't had problems with it since.

However, I did develop footdrop. That nerve that runs through your buttock, twists round on the outside of the thigh then down passed the inside of the knee, down the shin, over the top of the foot and finishing on the big toe: well, I still have a tingling sensation along the shin to my toe, where I can only feel touch on the left half of the toe.

My foot did flap quite a lot although it was a case of not being able to lift the toe with the rest of the foot and stubbed it a lot (I spend my winters in India on a beach and am almost always barefoot) which was annoying but didn't hurt because I couldn't feel it.

If you stand barefoot on the floor and try just to raise your toes on both feet as high as possible, I've found that has been quite helpful, but even after 4 years, I'm only able to lift the toes on my left foot half the distance off the floor as my good foot.

Sorry for the garbled reply.

Good luck.
 

slowmotion

Quite dreadful
Location
lost somewhere
^^^^ This.
I had a badly prolapsed disc in my lower back about twenty years ago. I think that what happens is that the disc bulges out from between two vertebrae and puts pressure on a nearby nerve as it branches out from the spinal cord. The nerve may serve a bit of your body quite far from the site of the problem......in my case, my left foot which started displaying severe loss of feeling and control. Agony in my back, but no pain in my foot.

The wonderfully bossy physiotherapists at Charing Cross Hospital eventually fixed me after ten weeks by sorting out the source of the problem, my lower spine. Bless them.
 
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gbb

Legendary Member
Location
Peterborough
It may not be the same but after my then 86 yo mum had a hip replacement she developed a 'lazy foot that dragged as she walked. No specific reason why but after 4 years i realised the other day, its a lot better. Not 100% but better.
In her case we assume it was simply using it, she has been unsteady in her feet for years.
 

vickster

Legendary Member
It may not be the same but after my then 86 yo mum had a hip replacement she developed a 'lazy foot that dragged as she walked. No specific reason why but after 4 years i realised the other day, its a lot better. Not 100% but better.
In her case we assume it was simply using it, she has been unsteady in her feet for years.
Maybe the peroneal nerve was injured during surgery and has recovered to some degree?

I’ve got a congenital bone spur on my fibula which rubs against the same muscle mentioned up thread and gets quite sore. I’ve discussed having it removed, simple task (albeit open with a big incision) but the nerve is close by and there’s a risk of damage to it and foot drop. The surgeon basically said I’d just need some orthotics to correct but I never fancied it...especially as it’s my ‘good’ leg!
 
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acuna_read

New Member
Location
London, UK
Maybe the peroneal nerve was injured during surgery and has recovered to some degree?
As above this is the nerve which activates the tibialis anterior.

As previously mentioned go and see a physiotherapist. May well be some excercises that could help and there are various devices to assist with your walking if it is causing you issues in terms of tripping up if it is that serious.
 
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