Foot drop symptoms

Posted , 7 users are following.

Over the past few months I've been having an on-and-off problem with my left foot. Initially and over the course of a few months, it would only happen occasionally: it felt like I could not control my foot properly when walking and it would weirdly tilt to the left, as if I could not keep it straight when lifting it. At the time I didn't give it too much importance, because it was quite rare.

I'm a reasonably active person, so I continued doing my normal activity: cycle to work every day, play football, run, go to the gym, do trekking. 

Now recently, since about 3 weeks ago, the problem got a lot worse and more frequent. I cannot walk normally without the external part of my foot dragging on the floor. If I concentrate and walk slowly, I can forcefully keep the foot somewhat straight, but if I do it for a while, my foot and leg get really tired and sore, so this is not something I can just start doing every time I walk.

I could never notice this problem while exercising / running, it's always when walking.

Before you tell me to go see a doctor, I have been and have my next appointment schedulled, but this is a rather slow process and I can't see it evolving. My orthopedist says everything looks normal: no loss of muscle strength anywhere (I can completely control my foot and pass all the tests when in rest), had nerve conduction studies which were also normal, can walk on my toes and on my heels, etc. Babinski test is also not positive.

As far as I can remember there was no significant trauma to this leg, other than normal contact when playing football.

I also sometimes feel a slight numbness in the lower leg and foot when seated. I should also add that this condition hasn't been painful so far.

Over this period I've had 3 episodes of my left knee giving way and getting really painfull for the subsequent hours, but my orthopedist and GP tell me it should not be related (which I find suspicious).

I would like to know if anyone experienced (or know someone who did) something similar and know what this is or what kind of exercises I could do to improve this problem (I'm hopping there's some kind of physical treatment I can do to improve this).

Thanks.

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9 Replies

  • Posted

    Wow, Zejoao, how scary for you and frustrating as well. Besides following up with your ortho doctor additional testing from your primary might be in order. My sister had a problem with a foot that resembles this and ended up having a medical condition. That aside, have you determined if both legs are the same length? After my first tkr 8 years ago, my right leg was slightly longer than my left. It didn't present to be a problem initially but in time it would cause me to stumble periodically as the muscles on my left leg became weaker and the knee became worse. It was actually so slight that it wasn't caught right away. 9 weeks ago I finally had a tkr on my left leg and now I'm concerned that that leg is slightly longer than the right. Still healing so everything is a bit off while I'm learning to walk correctly again!! I will follow up (of course) at my next appointment.

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    • Posted

      Hi mommermom, as far as I noticed, my legs appear to have roughly the same length. If there is a difference, no doctor seemed to be concerned with it so far, as none of them ponted it out. 

      Hope your recovery goes well and you're out walking soon!

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    • Posted

      That is good news for you. No doctor has mentioned this to me either it's just a thought on my part. I will follow up on my next appointment. I'm out there pushing myself! Best of luck to you in your quest for answers.

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  • Posted

    ok, my next thought is that there is an issue with your peroneal nerve. That is the nerve that sends messages to the muscles on the outside of the lower leg.

    Do you sit with your legs crossed a lot?

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    • Posted

      I slouch frequently (though I'm trying to correct that), but I rarely cross my legs when sitting.

      I think the doctor thought about the peroneal nerve and that may have been one of the reasons why we recommended the nerve conduction studies. Though the studies were fine. Come to think of it, if this happens when walking, it could be a nerve trapped when doing a specific movement. If that's the case, why would they do the nerve studies with the body at rest?

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  • Posted

    Question, are you sure you have no foot drop when you run? Do your feet strike the ground the exact same or is one stride shorter than the other?

    Also, I'm curious if this might work.....do you know anyone who knows how to apply kinesiotape?

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    • Posted

      Running feels normal, but I can't really say without watching from the outside. I'll try to ask someone to watch me run and check if they see any difference, maybe even video tape it.

      No, I do not know anyone who knows how to apply that. Could that help?

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  • Posted

    Can you record or have someone record you walking and then recorded you while running? Would like to see. Can see a lot with someone's gait patterns and movement patterns....

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  • Posted

    hi zejoao,

    thanks for sharing!

    sometimes I feel the same symptoms which you shared in above article. Get well soon! And I will also consult with my family doctor asap. 

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