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Old 04-24-2008, 04:40 PM   #1
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input

Hi I need more input

Last edited by Administrator; 11-19-2009 at 11:26 PM.

 
Old 04-30-2008, 12:34 PM   #2
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Re: Peroneal Nerve Damage ~ Dropped Foot! 2

Hi gmac1975...

I know that long recoveries such as yours are a real bore, but just realize that you're going in the right direction...it took my broken leg 4 months to heal, and I was told this was really fast...yeah, right...

I'm just curious about the extent of your foot drop, since all these cases are so different...I know you couldn't lift or dorsiflex your foot, but could you press your foot downward or inward? I can do both of these things, but can only lift the foot up about an inch...not enough to walk normally or drive...my right foot is the affected foot as well. Although I may eventually have to have your type of surgery, I've just found out that I'm a candidate for nerve release surgery...we're just waiting to see if I make any more improvement on my own, but I think this is it...

Hang in there and let me know how you are doing...

Tanya

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Old 04-30-2008, 03:24 PM   #3
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Re: Peroneal Nerve Damage ~ Dropped Foot! 2

Hi Tanya



Thanks for the well wishes. After 13 years, 4 weeks has been nothing! That's how long ago I severed my sciatic nerve, falling thru a plate glass door. A nerve graft was only a partial success at the time hence the drop foot, countless AFOs, foot problems, chiropodists etc. It was all these things that prompted me to search for an alternative and stumbled upon tendon transfer surgery. Just cant believe noone in the NHS (national health service in the UK) thought to mention it to me before, I could have had this done a decade ago..... I'm generally a positive person but last time around I was 90 percent positive, 10 percent negative that everything would heal up. When it didnt happen I was really low, it was a lot to take as an 18 yo kid. Now I'm the opposite, quite cynical that it wont work but secretly hoping it will.

I cant lift my foot at all but can push down a bit, even more so if someone holds it up. So there's a chance it might work. Fingers crossed....

Nerve release surgery is a new one on me, what does it involve? Good luck to you anyway, how you coping with it all? Keep your chin up anyway and keep posting, it's good to hear how others are getting on.

Graeme

Last edited by Administrator; 11-19-2009 at 11:28 PM.

 
Old 05-01-2008, 09:17 AM   #4
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Re: Peroneal Nerve Damage ~ Dropped Foot! 2

Hi Gmac1975...Although it took I while to isolate where my problem was coming from...the spine, hip, or knee...in my case, the problem is at the knee and the peroneal nerve. After an injury, if full function is not restored by natural healing after 4-6 months, nerve release surgery is performed in the hope that the nerve is kinked or trapped in scar tissue. The plan of this surgery is to restore normal function...if the nerve is more severely damaged or crushed, then the release surgery will at least permit the nerve to heal as best as it can, although there are no guarantees about full function returning. If you don't perform the surgery and the nerve stays trapped, then you'll stay with dropped foot...
How am I coping with all of this...to tell you the truth, not too well...I live in the country and having to depend on others for driving, etc is really starting to get to me. In the beginning when this whole thing happened, I was more optimistic about a favorable outcome, but as time drags on the reality of my situation is starting to sink in...I guess I'm in a similar place as you...quite cynical that it won't work, but secretly hoping that it will. In the event that no further healing takes place even with the release surgery, the tendon transfer surgery has also been mentioned as one of my options...I was just wondering if your doctors have given you any indication if you'll be able to drive if your surgery is a complete success...as you can see, I have a one-track mind about driving lately because it's something I can't do... By the way, I think your surgery is going to work...from reading other message boards, people who have had this surgery seemed to be very pleased, even if the results took quite a while to realize...since you mention the NHS, I assume to live in Great Britain...I live in New York...
Take care ... and keep posting...

Best,
Tanya

Last edited by Tanya8; 05-01-2008 at 09:19 AM.

 
Old 05-01-2008, 02:58 PM   #5
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Re: Peroneal Nerve Damage ~ Dropped Foot! 2

Hi Tanya,

Regarding driving, I've been driving an automatic car with my left foot for about 5 years now and it works fine. It feels a bit weird at first and you have to shuffle over in the seat a bit to get your right foot out of the way but after a while it's just like normal. Plus, if you're not happy with that there is this device you can get that fits over the accelerator to hide it and flips up a new accelerator where the clutch would be on a manual car ie to the left of the brake instead of the right. I probably haven't explained this very well but if you do an online search with key words like modified car disability accelerator etc then something should come up.

Let me know what you think.

Graeme

 
Old 05-03-2008, 03:58 PM   #6
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Re: Peroneal Nerve Damage ~ Dropped Foot! 2

Hi Graeme...

Thanks for all the information about driving with the left foot. I also have an automatic car, but it has a big old console in the middle, and I'm not sure how I could handle this...also, I am such an intense right-handed, right-sided person that right now I just cannot imagine how I will maneuver myself into driving with my left foot ...thanks for the encouragement tho, as it shows that when there is a will there is a way.

I've come across another kind of brace in my Internet travels, which may be of interest to you. According to past posters on this site, they are able to drive with the affected dropped foot by using it...it's called a SAFO...the company is Dorset Orthopaedic in England, so it may be of interest to you.

How are you coming along with your cast and healing after the tendon transfer...I hope you are feeling OK and healing well...take care and keep me posted...

Best,
Tanya

Last edited by moderator2; 05-03-2008 at 09:03 PM. Reason: do not direct off0board searches

 
Old 05-04-2008, 10:18 AM   #7
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Re: Peroneal Nerve Damage ~ Dropped Foot! 2

Hi Tanya

I didnt know whether to laugh or cry when I read about the SAFOs! I have been seeing the same orthotists for 13 years now and not once have they mentioned that these alternatives to AFOs existed. I remember a few years ago when I was so fed up with my splint and the problems they were causing me I asked my orthotist if there was ANYTHING at all I could do like have another operation or alternative splint. The idea of having an AFO like the SAFOs even crossed my mind one day when I was looking at at a sports ankle support. But my doctor just said there was nothing else to do which, in hinsight, p*sses me off no end. I know he goes to, and speaks at, conferences around the world and must have picked up on developing technologies but never thought to suggest it to me. When I found out about tendon transfers - by chance one day when I was surfing online desperately looking for solutions to my drop foot - I asked my orthotist why he had never mentioned it before. His answer was that they had to see how my case would develop and surgery wasnt the answer to everything blah blah blah. It just saddens me that people in the medical profession have it in their hands to make a REAL difference to other people's lives but sometimes choose not to do so.

On the plus side I am quite excited by the SAFOs so thanks for pointing that out! If my tendon transfer doesnt work out then at least I have another possible fallback option.

Regarding the current situation, my foot is quite sore today. I've been quite active this weekend so maybe I need to rest up a bit. My cast is due to come off a week on Thursday, so we will see then what the future holds. I remember Kippa saying on the old thread how, after 6 weeks, he had made good progress but then had to have the cast on for another 6 weeks so I'm not taking anything for granted. Feel a lot better, though, knowing there are other alternatives out there if this doesnt work. So thanks to you for that.

How's things with you? What's the next step in your recovery? Are you coping ok?

 
Old 05-04-2008, 07:20 PM   #8
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Re: Peroneal Nerve Damage ~ Dropped Foot! 2

Hi Graeme...

You're very welcome...I'm so happy that I could provide you with some useful information . The funny thing is that this company is located in England and Americans have to jump through hoops in order to get such a prosthetic...some more news on the brace front for you...I just got a new carbon brace from the Otto Bock Company. It's very light and comfortable, and it's such an improvement from the custom-molded plastic ones. The plastic type was so uncomfortable and was actually turning my foot blue! ..this could be a less expensive (than the SAFO) but comfortable interim solution for you until you are finally walking brace free.
It's funny that you mention being sore, since I've been sore as well for the past day...in my case I think it's weather related...even tho the bone is healed, it still feels odd and painful at times.

As for me, the next step in my recovery is surgery if there is no further improvement, and to tell the truth, I 'm very nervous about it...... Also, I know what you mean about doctors, and I guess they're the same all over...really, how could they know what it's all about, since they don't have to live in your body and know what drop foot feels like...

Take care and feel better...

Best,
Tanya

Last edited by Tanya8; 05-08-2008 at 08:52 AM.

 
Old 05-08-2008, 03:43 PM   #9
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Re: Peroneal Nerve Damage ~ Dropped Foot! 2

Hey Tanya

How you keeping? Your new brace sounds good, I will check out that firm if my leg doesnt heal.

So... a week today is D-day when I go back to the hospital to get the cast off. I guess there will be probably be one of 3 possible outcomes: 1, the foot is miraculously all healed and the foot drop is gone (hmmm.. unlikely ), 2, they say there is improvement but i need to have another cast or 3, they put me in some sort of walking boot. I think the latter is the most likely answer but cant say for sure. I've had to make tentative plans for work and my social life beyond next week but I'm frightened and reluctant to make any concrete arrangements cos I really have no idea what my leg is going to be like. Is kinda weird.

Anyway, hope you're ok and keep your chin up

Graeme

 
Old 05-13-2008, 03:46 PM   #10
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Re: Peroneal Nerve Damage ~ Dropped Foot! 2

Hi Graeme,

I can fully understand your feelings of apprehension as the time approaches for your cast to come off...while it would be wonderful if your foot was completely healed and nothing more would be necessary, I think the most likely scenario will be a walking boot for a while...others with your surgery have posted on Health Boards, and it seems that this is just the way it goes...

As for myself, I'm getting nervous...it seems that the docs are as sure as they can be without actually surgically looking at my nerve, that I will benefit from nerve release surgery. If I do nothing, then I will pretty much stay where I am...with surgery there are 4 possible outcomes...I'll be able to move my foot normally right away, I may have to wait a couple of months in order to get more upward movement, it will take a year or two for movement to return, or the nerve has been damaged beyond repair and I will stay like this. As far as I can see, I have to at least give myself the opportunity to heal, so the surgery is a no-brainer.

Of course, like you I would love to walk out of the hospital with a normal foot, but I'll settle for any improvement that I can get. I fully understand your uneasiness about procedures not working, since I am facing the same thing myself. Even though I know it may take a lot of time for me to show improvement, you better believe that I will be really disappointed when I can't move my foot normally soon after the operation...I should and do know better, but that's the truth.

Please let me know how you're doing after your doctor's appointment...I'm sure it will be the walking boot...
Take care and feel better...

Best,
Tanya

 
Old 05-15-2008, 10:13 AM   #11
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Re: Peroneal Nerve Damage ~ Dropped Foot! 2

Hi Tanya,

Well, not long back from the hospital. It was quite weird, my head is still spinning actually. Saw 2 nurses who, eventually, got my cast off. The consultant wasnt around so I just sat and stared at my foot for 10 mins wondering if it had worked or not. Then the consultant came in, had a quick look at it, got me to hobble around a bit then told me just to go home and see how it goes! Not what I was expecting at all - no cast, no walking boot, no physio - nothing. All he said was to wear my old AFO for a few weeks at night but apart from that to try to walk about without it and see how it goes then go back and see him in 6 weeks. Am still in shock by his response.

Went back and read thru the original Dropped Foot thread and noticed Kippa saying his end result was to have an internal AFO that kept his foot at 90 degrees and I'm wondering if thats what mine is meant to be as it seems to be staying up but I cant move it myself. Have phoned the hospital and am waiting on the consultant phoning me back but communication obviously isnt his strong point.... Will go out for a walk later and see how it goes.

Anyway, how are you? Nerve release surgery seems the way forward, are you going to go ahead with it? Nothing ventured, nothing gained I guess.

Graeme

 
Old 05-17-2008, 12:13 PM   #12
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Re: Peroneal Nerve Damage ~ Dropped Foot! 2

Hi Graeme,

It's sounds as if you've had a rather odd experience with your visit to the hospital...I don't know if there are two or more separate surgeries with tendon transfers or not...one an internal AFO, and another which restores additional function? Do you have any pain or discomfort when you try to walk...it sounds like you're doing OK, but the lack of contact with your consultant would leave me feeling a little bewildered. As for phoning your doctor, remember that the squeaky wheel gets the most oil...just keep calling until you talk to him...

I'm also puzzled about wearing your old AFO at night...I have to wear one at night as well in order to keep my Achilles tendons from shortening and pointing my foot down permanently, but I wear a nighttime version that is a lot more comfortable than the one I wear during the day...took me a while to find just the right one, since I can get neuropathic pain if the night brace isn't just perfect...I refer to my foot as the "royal foot" because it can be that sensitive . I use the Healwell Cub Resting Comfort Slipper in the event you're interested in this.

As for myself, I have decided to go ahead with the surgery, since I've also been told that it's not prudent to wait too long to do this. Although I am not looking forward to more surgery, it does seem like this is what I have to do if I want to take care of my foot drop...my physiotherapist has even mentioned that it seems as if something is trapped in my leg and preventing my foot from moving normally. Right now I'm starting all the preliminary paperwork and testing that comes with any surgery in the US...
Please let me know how you are managing with your "new" foot and if you've finally managed to speak with your consultant. I hope that you walk and feel better and better every day...

Best,
Tanya

Last edited by Tanya8; 05-17-2008 at 12:14 PM.

 
Old 05-19-2008, 12:37 PM   #13
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Re: Peroneal Nerve Damage ~ Dropped Foot! 2

Hi Tanya

Well, it's been a strange few days. After my last message the consultant amazingly did phone back although he wasnt exactly full of information. Asked him about movement in my foot/ankle and he said it might come with time, might not. Would know better in a few weeks, he said. He also changed his mind on me not wearing the AFO during the day, said I should wear it when out and about for a few weeks and at night too. Went back to work today, was quite uncomfortable walking about, hope it gets better with time. Unfortunately my car seems to be playing up too (in sympathy, ha! ) so I might get more walking than I anticipated until I get it fixed.

When I first had my accident I had a special night AFO to wear, sounds similar to what you described. It was like a small blue cradle with padding in it, was quite comfortable! But dont have that any more so just stuck with the old plastic thing, urggh.

It sounds like there is real hope for you with this surgery. Why are you reluctant? Just fed up with it all? I hope it all works out for you, keep me posted.

Graeme

 
Old 05-20-2008, 11:06 AM   #14
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Re: Peroneal Nerve Damage ~ Dropped Foot! 2

Hi Graeme,

I'm happy to hear that you've finally heard from your consultant and that you're back to work so soon after your surgery. I'm not surprised to hear that you're uncomfortable walking about so soon and am confident that you can only get better with time...but don't overdue the walking thing, even if your car is acting up right now. Isn't it something with cars...they always pick the most inconvenient times to break down--sort of like people, I guess .

As for myself, I know that there is real hope for me with the nerve surgery, but my past surgery for a broken femur bone has kind of altered my view of all surgeries in general, since is was a very painful experience...I've had surgeries before, but nothing prepared me for this. I know that I'm not being logical , but that last surgery was a humdinger Also, you are very perceptive...I am kind of fed up with it all. You know, I used to think that doctors could fix just about anything, but I've grown up along the way...

By the way, I made an inquiry to the Dorset Orthopaedic Company near you, and they were very responsive. In addition to sending me all kinds of information, they also sent me a list of orthotists in the US who can make the cast for such a SAFO, and interestingly one of them is right down the block from where I live!. I hope I don't need it, but it feels good to have an alternative in the event that the surgical treatments don't work... Also, I have some information that may be of interest to you, but I keep forgetting to tell you about it. Of course, I hope your surgery works 100% and you can throw your old plastic AFO away, but there may be another answer for you if you should ever need it in the future. Have you ever heard of Bioness? It's blue tooth technology and it sends electrical impulses to the foot via blue tooth technology. I've seen people using it and it is truly amazing. The patients I've spoken to say they can achieve normal balancing and walking gait on straight as well as uneven surfaces, and there is no AFO or SAFO involved. Just use any search engine to look it up if you should ever need it...But I hope you don't...Unfortunately, I can't use it as far as I know because my problem is further down on the knee...this only works when the nerve dysfunction is higher up...

I'll know more about the surgery and the details by the end of the week and will keep you posted, In the meantime, please let me know how you are doing walking about and all...and feel better and better everyday!

Best, Tanya

Last edited by Tanya8; 05-20-2008 at 03:57 PM.

 
Old 05-23-2008, 10:35 AM   #15
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Re: Peroneal Nerve Damage ~ Dropped Foot! 2

Hi Graeme...

Guess I do sound like a foot drop salesman, but I happen to go to PT at a famous Ortho / rehab hospital in New York. During my sessions, I'm sort of like a fly on the wall observing all the new latest and greatest things for drop foot, even if they don't apply in my particular case...also, 5 months of nothing to do but heal broken bones, gave me plenty of time to browse the Internet and preserve my sanity at the same time...

In my opinion, the reason you and most people don't hear much about alternatives to our problem is because the medical community doesn't think it's important enough. After all, it's not life-threatening and doesn't even shorten one's life...many neuro specialists are into more profound work, such as strokes or spinal paralysis...guess there's nothing too glamorous about a foot...

Although you haven't noticed any movement yet, I think that it will take time and will take place when the swelling goes down. Also, I'm sorry that all of this information reached you after your surgery, but communicating through a message board is not the most timely way to find things out. As for Bioness, I really am hoping your surgery will work 100%, but if not, then I hope Bioness can help...I just saw someone using it yesterday, and they walked around so effortlessly and normally...this particular patient had a stroke and had drop foot as a result of it. I wish I could use it, but it's not for my case where the problem is at the knee.

And....my surgery is scheduled for next Thursday. All the paperwork, tests, and whatever else has been straightened out, and it's coming much sooner than I expected...better this way, since I won't have so much time to think about it...Also, in the end, if this surgery doesn't do what I'd like it to do, there is always the SAFO to fall back on...

Let me know how you're doing and don't try to do too much too soon...feel better...

Tanya

 
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