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Foot Drop Cauda Equina Syndrome

Foot Drop Cauda Equina Syndrome

Foot drop can be a symptom of cauda equina syndrome. If cauda equina syndrome is not treated in time, the patient's symptoms (including their foot drop) can be permanent.

If you have been left with foot drop because cauda equina syndrome was not treated quickly enough, there could be grounds for a medical compensation claim. Please do not hesitate to get in touch with us for more information.

What is foot drop?

Foot drop, also known as drop foot, is when someone cannot flex their foot upwards. Consequently the foot drags along ground when they walk. This can happen due to muscle or nerve damage.

What is cauda equina syndrome?

Cauda equina syndrome is when the cauda equina nerves at the base of the spine are squashed and damaged. They can be compressed in a number of ways, such as a large disc prolapse, a spinal tumour, a crushing injury, an infection, spinal stenosis, ankylosing spondylitis, inflammation and a blood clot.

Foot drop from cauda equina syndrome

Foot drop can be a symptom of cauda equina syndrome. Foot drop is usually a symptom of another condition, although it will not always be cauda equina syndrome.

Cauda equina syndrome can cause foot drop because the nerves which enable foot flexion are damaged. This means the nerves will not be able to send signals to the muscles to lift the foot. Cauda equina syndrome can cause foot drop in one foot or in both feet.

Living with foot drop after cauda equina syndrome

Foot drop can be very disabling, particularly if it is present in both feet. It can make it hard to walk, as the foot (or feet) will scrape along the floor. Walking aids such as crutches or a wheelchair may be needed.

Cauda equina syndrome can also be associated with other permanent injuries, such as weakness in the legs, numbness around the buttocks and genitals, bladder dysfunction and bowel dysfunction. Living with all these things combined is very hard and will severely limit the individual's life.

Avoiding foot drop from CES

Permanent cauda equina injuries can be avoided with early medical care. Treatment needs to be very fast, with surgery required within 24 to 48 hours of the onset of symptoms. If this window of opportunity is missed, permanent cauda equina injuries will occur.

If treatment is delayed because of medical errors, there could be grounds for a medical compensation claim. Contact us to find out more.

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