Foot Drop or Drop Foot are term’s used for the inability to lift the foot upwards and weakness of one foot compared to the other. Foot drop isn’t a disease, it is a sign of an underlying neurological, muscular or anatomical problem. This condition comes in varying presentations and may be temporary or permanent.
Causes of Foot Drop
The duration depends on the cause. It can be neurological, structural, or muscular in origin.
Including, but not limited to the following;
- Charcot Marie Tooth
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Parkinson ’s disease
- Cerebral palsy
- Bone Spurs that can put compression on the nerve, such as those that form in the lower spine.
- Injury to our back, hip or knee can trap or damage the nerves extending to the top of our foot. This nerve directs the foot muscle to dorsiflex the foot.
- Surgery to the back or leg.
Symptoms of Foot Drop
- Struggling to dorsiflex the foot (lift upwards).
- Difficulty for the foot to clear the ground when we walk and cause it to drag onto the floor compared to the other foot.
- Lifting the knee higher to try and clear the affected foot off of the ground.
- Increased frequency of falls, or tripping over due to the foot dragging.
Treatment for Foot Drop
- Strengthening of the weakened muscle with a tailored program.
- AFO or brace in more severe cases.
- Custom foot orthotics in less severe cases.
- Footwear education to ensure the shoe is supportive enough and light enough for the foot.
This is a nerve and muscle condition, without treatment this may become worse over time and therefore treatment is advised if you suspect or are suffering from foot drop.
If you have noticed any changes in your walking style, loss of feeling or weakness in the leg or pain please call to make an appointment with one of our Podiatrists on 9603 0334 or make an online booking.