Author Topic: Foot Drop Recovery?  (Read 3821 times)

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  • LBHR - Dr. Pritchett 12/27/2013
Foot Drop Recovery?
« on: January 18, 2014, 02:17:53 PM »
Hello -
I'm a 42 year old male - 3 weeks postop left hip resurfacing by Dr Pritchett in Seattle.  The 2nd day postop it was apparent that I was experiencing foot drop in my left foot.  The doc went back in for exploratory surgery the 3rd day to check for nerve laceration or compression, but all was fine.  A lumbar MRI showed an extruded disc on the L5 nerve, so back I went into surgery on day 7 of initial postop of back surgery.  Unfortunately, that decompression did not alleviate the foot drop either.  (3 surgeries in 7 days -- not very fun)

I wanted to see if there are any members who have experienced foot drop and have a full recovery and how long it took.  I am optimistic and will be trying any and all rehab options to try to correct it (PT, Vit B12, acupuncture, the hokey-pokey, whatever it takes).  I am also going to schedule a EMG to see if we can pinpoint the issue.  Hopefully a tendon transfer is not in the future, however, I have read of good success with that procedure.

Thanks in advance for any advice or comments---

Kevin Warr

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Re: Foot Drop Recovery?
« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2014, 09:41:43 PM »
WOW Tian

That doesn't sound very pleasant at all. I would like to think your surgeons can get on top of it pretty damn quickly. Did you have any issues prior to your BHR op.?

Kev Down Under
Surgery 14/12/13 - Dr Patrick Weinrauch


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  • LBHR - Dr. Pritchett 12/27/2013
Re: Foot Drop Recovery?
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2014, 12:22:26 AM »
I did have an episode of with my sciatic nerve about 4 months prior to my BHR surgery.  My back tightened up and I did have some tingling in the leg and foot, but it resolved itself.  I believe the extruded disc they saw in the MRI may have been from that.

Dr Pritchett did do a study 20 years ago that looked at 10 people with hip arthroplasty that had foot drop and an extruded disc.  5 had the surgery to fix the disc -- and all showed levels of having the foot come back at some point.  The 5 that did not have the disc surgery, had no changes in the foot drop.  So this does give me hope as I did have the disc surgery.  Time will tell.....

Coby Taylor

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Re: Foot Drop Recovery?
« Reply #3 on: July 29, 2019, 05:42:47 AM »
Hey Tian ,

Just seeing how your foot drop is going . As Iím on that journey too,



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Re: Foot Drop Recovery?
« Reply #4 on: July 29, 2019, 07:27:37 PM »

Sorry to hear you're struggling with this foot drop.  A herniated disc around L3 30 years ago ruptured and caused me a very painful and scary 48 hours but resolved itself without surgery.  I am also a Dr. Pritchett patient as is the OP of this thread.  I'm wondering if you could contact Dr. Pritchett to seek an opinion.  His orthopedic knowledge and experience is vast and he might offer some line of recovery for you.  Wishing you the best.


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Re: Foot Drop Recovery?
« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2020, 05:48:05 AM »
Hi Coby / Tian

I've just logged back in to Surface Hippy and saw the foot drop thread and thought I'd chip in. 

I had a BHR under Ronan Tracey in late 2014.  After which I suffered grade three Heteropic Ossification.  Fast forward to Sep 2018, I had a hip arthroscopy to remove some of the HO. The next day I suffered a massive disc prolapse.  Then three days later foot drop set in. 7 days after the initial surgery, I had an emergency microdisectomy to address the L4/L5 bulg and the foot drop problem

I went into the arthroscopy surgery with slight back pain, as a result of jiu jitsu training.  That being said, 18 months earlier I did have similar excrutiating experience with insane sciatica whilst on a trip to Ireland.  This took three months to recover from but no lasting issues beyond that. 

 I can press down on my toes and have slight dorselflexion, so in that sense it's not classic foot drop. This has been on-going since 5/10/18 and I have had a some improvement.  Essentially I have limited dorselflexion and my foot slaps whilst walking. Together with my compromised right hip due to the HO, both knees hurt at from time to time.  Pretty sure this is down to an unbalanced gait??

I'm currently under a neuro surgeon to asses the nerve damage ( still waiting for nerve conduction tests) a hip and ankle orthopaedic surgeon and Ronan Tracey. At some point this year he will go back in and remove the HO using open surgery. This will be combined with radiotherapy before hand.  Not looking forward to that given the above.

Interestingly, the hip and ankle orthopaedic surgeon doesn't seem to believe my foot drop was caused by the disc exploding??? He seems to think it's a perineal palsy which can be caused by a trip or a fall.  Total madness !!! I explained this to the neuro surgeon the following day which gave him a laugh.  I'm now having to seek a second opinion.

What's confusing him is that I have good use of my toes - can raise up and press down.  He can also palpate Tib anterior tendon.  However, the MRI shows a 90% loss in tendon function that dorselflexes the foot.

So if his conclusion is true then the only place this could have happened, in my mind, would have been in theatre ?  Maybe they put my non operated foot into traction which compromised my foot???

However, together with the neurosurgeon, I seem to think the foot drop was a result of the disc prolapse, (a pre-existing condition brought on by traction) and hopefully the nerve conduction tests will prove this to be true?

As it stands atm, I think my recovery has plateaued and having looked into braces etc, I'm gearing up for a tendon transfer at some point down the line.

I wish you both well in your recovery.   
rBHR Ronan Treacy 11/12/14- Birmingham UK
54mm head - 60mm cup


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