Foot drop paralysis of the muscles of the leg below the knee that lift the front of the foot.
Foot drop is a condition resulting in the paralysis of the muscles of the leg below the knee that lift the front of the foot. This means that patients experiencing this will not be able to move their foot in an upwards motion. Often, a person with foot drop will need to wear a leg brace to assist with walking.
There are a few possible causes of foot drop. Among the most common are lumbar disc herniation (damage to a nerve root in the lumbar spine) or damage to nerves around the knee or hip.
A foot drop can also begin after back or leg injuries, a knee operation or even common activities like squatting or crossing legs for long periods of time.
Treating Foot Drop
The multidisciplinary team at the Mass General Paralysis Center will diagnose the type of injury and the location that is causing a foot drop. Once a the location of has been identified, our physicians can determine the best course of action. Procedures to correct foot drop may involve relieving pressure from a nerve in the knee or spine. In some severe cases, nerve grafting or nerve transfers may be necessary. If a patient has been experiencing foot drop for an extended period, a tendon transfer may the best intervention to restore movement.
Signs of recovery can be seen in three to six months after the operation, and full return of function may be achieved in 12-24 months.
News & Publications
Quantity and Characteristics of Waste at a Level I Trauma Center
The purpose of this study was to quantify and describe the amount of waste generated by an Emergency Department, identify deviations from waste policy and explore areas for waste reduction.
The Climate-Smart Emergency Department: A Primer
Our publication keeps health care professionals up to date on the latest research and clinical advances from Mass General.
Research Institute Blog
News and notes from the largest hospital-based research program in the United States
A podcast devoted to uncovering the stories of Mass General's relentless pursuit to break boundaries and provide exceptional care
The Patient Gateway provides secure online access to your health information whenever you need it. Check upcoming appointments, communicate with your doctor’s office, review medications and pay medical bills—all seamlessly online 24/7.