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Can negligence at the hospital cause drop foot?

Hi Everyone. Can you please help me?

2 weeks ago I fractured my ankle on the job. A week later I went to surgery. Now I think I have drop foot.

Its been 8 days since the surgery and I cannot lift my foot at the ankle, nor can I point my toes downwards, and I have numbness in my right leg as well. I'm having a numbing, tingling, pins and needles, and burning sensation in my right foot. When someone or myself touch my foot I have no feeling, when it itches I cannot scratch the itch. It is very uncomfortable and it's making me depressed because I really want to move and feel my foot again.

The day of my surgery, the anesthesiologist told me the nerve block injections he gave me in my groin area and on the backside of my thigh before surgery would last a few hours up to a day, so that I wouldn't have to feel pain immediately after my surgery. I agreed to not being able to feel or move my foot for a day so that I would not have to suffer from pain but I still can't feel or move my foot. I also have a have a black and blue mark starting from where the injection of the nerve shot was administered spreading down to my upper calf. A few a days ago I was able to move my big toe a little but that's about it.

I've been in the ER, doctors office, x-rays, mri's, and cat scans. I still haven't done an EMG or a nerve conduction test yet because I've just learned about them online. My doctor said this looks like a drop foot, he said his surgery did not cause this but perhaps it was the tightness from the splint or the nerve block injection.

My first step recommended by the doctor, was going to get a MRI done around the knee area where the black and blue is and that he would contact the anesthesiologist. It's been 2 days since the MRI and after reading everything on this site it sounds like drop foot can be caused from different reasons and can be more severe than others depending on how damaged the peroneal nerve is damaged.

I really don't want this to last forever, I'm hoping I can get good information to prevent this from becoming permanent or irreversible.



  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
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    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
  • My Dad had back surgery way back in the early 70's and they "stretched" a nerve in his back and he has had Drop Foot ever since...Back then you really couldn't do much about it but now I would make sure the Hospital knew what happened and that they do what they can to discover the cause... I'm so sorry that you have to deal with this and I hope you can get some help... Good Luck.. Rhonda
  • Thank you Rhonda I appreciate it.

    I am doing everything the doctor is saying to do. Also, I have made an appointment with another doctor to get a second opinion on whats wrong with me.
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