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foot drop

I am trying to find others with foot drop and see if surgery helped them at all


  • i have managed to find this thread which although is old may be interesting reading for you. :-)


    hopefully some other members who do have experience of foot drop will be along to share their experiences.
  • It sounds deceptively simple in its terminology but often foot drop is a red flag for another primary condition like a damaged nerve, trapped nerve or stenosis.
    I have permanent foot drop and I cannot stress the importance of being proactive. Push the GP, the surgeon/consultant. Nerve injuries take an age to heal fractions of a mm per month to repair and sometimes do not always. There is not much over this side of the pond(UK) regarding 'time windows for surgery'.
    However in America there are many web articles by consultants/doctors who stress the importance of a definite 'time window' of release of the nerve.
    I know the Doctors mean well over here, but take it from someone who was left for 3 months before a NHS hospital could scan me and then told after the results of the scan that my foot drop was permanent, it ain't no fun.
    what value do you put on walking properly?
    Get the surgery relieve the trapped nerve. There is some risk that the nerve could be damaged during surgery. There is also treatment with an AFO brace to see if the nerve becomes free by itself. You have to way up the risks.
    But find out what the 'time window is' for your case, as you do not want foot drop permanently.
    Some medical staff in the UK, think just give them a brace and end of story. Do not believe their stance that foot drop is of no great deal.
    I lost my full driving licence , I lost my job because I needed a full driving licence ( I can only drive automatics), because of foot drop, it is a disability. It is life altering.
    I recently had surgery on my lower back to stop radiculopathy but I was told pre surgery by the surgeon that the foot drop was permanent. The decompression operation deals with the sciatic pain only in my case. However in other peoples it is imperative the nerve is released in a timely fashion, do not accept a 12 month wait on a list. If your local health authority can not do it see your GP and find one that can in a shorter time, it is important.
    I am sorry to bad mouth some doctors in this comment but I had some bad experiences with some of their attitudes 'of just wear a brace and it ok' , is not acceptable.
    I am sorry if I have frightened you. But I am a realist and believe in telling it like it is.
    Be pro active and push them.
    It is not them with the foot drop and having to live with its consequences.
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  • Sorry about all you have been through evh2!

    Surgery caused foot drop for me. Luckily it was my left foot. I had tons of PT for it and had to walk with an AFO brace for a few months be it healed. I can't imagine that being life long. Sure, there are worse things in life, but if you can avoid it by surgery sooner than later... then I can't imagine putting it off.
    33yo mom of two. My surgical history...preadolescence scoliosis, kyphosis, and a hot mess.... 5 spine surgeries and lots of items added I wasn't born with (titanium, peek, surgical steel). Guess cremation is out. TSA loves me.
  • Hi Allmetal looks like you have a bad condition with all the titanium. You have had lots of problems and surgery, sorry to hear that. You are right there are worse things in life. Many. i was just trying to point out both perspectives surgery v non surgery.
    With the nerve damage and entrapment left too long the nerve I guess basically dies off and neuropathy sets in. It is a gamble having surgery (like yourself said in your own case) but you have to way up your own individual situation and take medical advice.
    With nerves damage comes additional problems of not being able to feel pain in your foot and leg and more prone to infection of chaffing/cuts with the AFO rubbing the skin. Basically cannot feel a cut or a blister.
    For some people foot drop can be permanent.
    For most foot drop can be cured.
  • Hi

    My weakness rim my foot drop makes me trip and thankGod have only falen once
    I reach for a wall or table or chair the second i trip on my numb toes and foot
    Anyone else have this problem?
    I can move my ankle up and down but feel like my foot is walking on a pillow
    When i try to do circular motion with my ankle i get "jerky" circle
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  • Prior to my ACDF on june 17, 2013, didn't have full fledged foot drop, but close. Had weakness on my left side, no hand grip, weak left leg and foot. Could move the foot up and down also, but when taking a step my foot would kind of flop forward, but did have some control over it, but was loosing it. After the surgery, I gained full use of my left side, no funky walking. Still have some numbness all that I had prior to surgery, now it comes and goes, think that is still apart of healing. My surgeon told me not to wait 6 months for the surgery because it would be too late.
    ACDF C4/5, C5-6
    June 17, 2013
  • Thanks for your post and i am so happy that your foot drop is better
    This gives me HOPE for my surgery on Aug 13th
    Ps. Can you give. more details on why yiur surgeon told you not to wait six months, is he talking about another surgery in the FUTURE or that it was good you did not wait longer when you had the surgery you had already?
  • I had stenosis with acute myelopathy, cord compression. The only fix for cord compression I was told is surgery to stop the progression and not to fix any currant symptoms. If a person waits there is a chance of the damage becoming permanent, and possibly paralyze if no surgery was done. Not trying to scare you. There are lots of articles here on spine health about foot drop, and stenosis, and myelopathy. Might help to do some reading, it sure helped me to better make an informed decision as what to do. I did the surgery and mine turned out good, can walk fine now and hold my morning cup of coffee :)
    ACDF C4/5, C5-6
    June 17, 2013
  • Hoping and praying that my foot drop problems gets resolved since i had my surgery 7 weeks ago.
    Some strengthening has happened already but numbness and tingling is getting worse.

    I still fear falling with such a weak foot.

    My surgeon specializes in severe neuro problems, so i have a good chance for healing

    But my foot drop is 2 years old and i realistically feel the damage is permanent

    But then sometimes i am NOT numb at all and then sometimes totally numb. So maybe wuth decompression being done now the nerve has a chance for healing.

    My numbness changes as i said, that must be a good thing right?

  • Debbied67DDebbied67 Posts: 99
    edited 11/03/2014 - 10:21 AM
    Has any one had surgery to correct foot drop,,,,ankel fusion or nerve transfers,,,, if so how long do you have to have foot drop for,,,, I only had mine 4 months had microdiscectomy 7 weeks ago but still the same,,,, I know it takes time for nerves to heal,,, was just wondering for the future if nessasery,,,,,thanks
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