Foot drop is when you can't lift the front part of your foot due to weakened or paralyzed muscles or nerve damage. A person with foot drop will have trouble walking normally because of this. Foot drop is not a disease, but it is a symptom of an underlying problem. Foot drop may be temporary or permanent, depending on the underlying problem.
A Answers (4)
Honor Society of Nursing (STTI) answered
Akash Bajaj, MD, Pain Medicine, answered
Foot drop, also known as drop foot or dropped foot, refers to a weakening of the muscles that allow one to flex the ankle and toes, causing the individual to drag the front of the foot while walking and to compensate for this by bending the knee to lift the foot.
An easy way to test for foot drop is to try to walk on the heels. If this is difficult, drop foot may be present.
While foot drop is a neuromuscular disorder that affects the nerves and muscles, it is not actually a disease in itself but rather a symptom of some other medical problem, possibly by a condition in the low back.
Foot drop is a nerve problem that makes it hard to lift the front part of the foot when walking. It may cause a person to shuffle the foot on the ground or lift the whole foot higher than usual when walking.
Treatment depends on the cause. If foot drop is caused by an injury or a health problem that can be treated, the person may be able to walk normally. In some cases, exercises can help strengthen leg muscles that lift the foot. Leg braces or other types of support also can help a person walk more easily.
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Donna Hill Howes, RN, Administrator, answered
Foot drop is the inability to raise the front part of the foot due to weakness or paralysis of the muscles that lift the foot. As a result, individuals with foot drop scuff their toes along the ground or bend their knees to lift their foot higher than usual to avoid the scuffing, which causes a "steppage" gait. Foot drop can be unilateral (affecting one foot) or bilateral (affecting both feet). Foot drop is a symptom of an underlying problem and can be either temporary or permanent, depending on the cause.
Causes include neurodegenerative disorders of the brain that cause muscular problems, such as multiple sclerosis, stroke, and cerebral palsy; motor neuron disorders, such as polio, some forms of spinal muscular atrophy, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (commonly known as Lou Gehrig's disease); injury to the nerve roots, such as in spinal stenosis; peripheral nerve disorders, such as Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, or acquired peripheral neuropathy; local compression or damage to the peroneal nerve as it passes across the fibular bone below the knee; and muscle disorders, such as muscular dystrophy or myositis.
This answer is based on source information from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke.