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Foot Drop - Drop Foot from misplaced pedicle screws

Started by zemindar on 02/07/2017 12:05am

Has anyone else suffered Foot Drop after having a spinal surgery with misplaced pedicle screws? There are no current discussions about Foot Drop after a wrong spinal fusion surgery on the web. I have severe Foot Drop and I am desperate to connect with others!

I am a Scoliosis patient who had my 4th Scoliosis surgery in January 2016. I already had sixteen levels of my spine fused, (from C7 to L3) and this surgery was for treatment of "Scoliosis Flatback," which meant that the remaining two levels below my long fusion had collapsed. Anyway, the surgery was supposed to take six hours but took thirteen. I woke up with a paralyzed foot! Then, my surgeon did nothing to find the cause of the paralysis. Months later after agonizing, indescribable pain in my foot, I diagnosed myself off the web, suspecting that he had misplaced a pedicle screw. I was right, and eight months later I had another surgeon re-do the entire surgery.

However, my foot is still paralyzed! I cannot walk without a brace on my leg and a walker or a cane. Will I ever be able to own a dog again, or walk on the beach, or walk anywhere? My life is forever changed and I have entered the world of the truly disabled. Also, my foot and half of my leg is in constant agony! It's either a burning hot poker feeling, or a tight blood pressure cuff sensation, or a crawling feeling, etc. Hideous, continuous, pain that, if it were not for pain medicine, would, in polite terms, not be compatible with life. My foot is paralyzed but it hurts and burns all the time.

I have severe Foot Drop. All the threads on it are defunct. Please write in or write to me through this forum if you have this condition. Yes, I have tried all the treatments! A brace does not cure Foot Drop. I have severe nerve damage in my L5, causing the Foot Drop. My nerve is not severed, but it is damaged. They do not know if I will ever recover. Thank you and God bless you all!

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2 Responses


Hello, zemindar--thanks for sharing your story. We wish we could tell you what to expect, what could relieve your pain, what you can do next. But, we can't. We are here to listen, though, and we want you to know how truly sorry we are for everything you've been through.

We did some digging on SpineUniverse to see if any content might shed light on your situation, and we came across this ( How Do You Treat Drop Foot? ). You've clearly done a lot of research already about drop foot, but perhaps this article will lend something new to what you've learned.

Again, we truly hope you can find some answers and relief--and that someday soon you'll take your dog for a long walk on the beach.


Hi, Idk what my issues are, but I have some parallels to you. My story I was diagnosed w/ scoliosis @11/12yrs 30yrs ago. My curve though is in lumbar w/ 40* curve @ 16/17 and being threatened w/ steel rods 1/2 way up spine if it 1morr Moved another inch. Yeah Me it did! However surgery was not option b/c I got pregnant and would be single mother w: newborn trying enough w/outsurgery... and tho curve sever it was not causing issues. I honestly don’t know good/bad 1st time back went out was @23 2yrs after I aged out of Shriners , & unfortunately health coverage as adult thinks most treatments are ‘elective’. So I took what I knew from a decade of @ Shriners, listening to my body & limitations, and got on w/ life, with high pain tolerance for occasional flare ups, in lower left muscles spasms, constantly that I would treat w/ relaxers 3-4xyr. Sorry history so long but, felt needed to show I KNOW. The struggles, this silent Disability really has. Now on to the next parallels the numbness, what I call Vibrating Pins and Needles, that affects My Entire left side from Chec Down to My little toe growing worse daily.

In May 2015, while waking to work (which btw was best job I’ve ever had to compliment my back) I was struck by a car in center divider waiting to continue crossing when NB cleared. I tried getting out of way, as result theystruc My Rhip, threw me up about 2ft and positioned so My left my head (Thank God I had purse and on that shoulder instead of normal on Right) & Shoulder impacted with the road before rest my body did. (I KID you not my thought while flying thru the air... F$&! MY BACK!) Surprisingly My back wasn’t any worse then it normally was, in hindsight I think that the easy I hit and moved went w/ My Curve as opposed to against was/is Why I’m still alive. For if I had gone against Would’ve caused fatal injury. Any ways my left cavical was broken and my right Hi Joint ball bone was severely bruised and Swollen. The hip healed quickly (I think but will be problematic in future) but my clavicle which should have been approx 6wks took 9momths & bone stimulator to heal in which Icould not work (I deliver Pizza and both arms needed) but left arm had issues weakness, tinglingdown arm topinky&rimg finger. Hitch didn’t correct at bone heal, 2nd shoulderortho surgeon had me getting 3rdMRI in10mths which showed Herniated disc in C5 6 &7 that was masked by shoulder and my ability to ignore some of my limitations. So that meant my destiny for spine surgery caught up to Me. Tokeep thisshrter thenbooklength, I’ll skip too the Surgery wichwas mid April 2016 I elected overnight instead of in/out day surgery Ctr, b/c diabetes and difficulty waking from anesthesia. I’m glad I did, My Neck swelled so Badly I could barely breath let alone swallow water, B/c of negligence on Hospital all I can say is My Surgeon finally called in middle of the night and actually came in to c me, idk what exactly Done
But I could breath better, & He Okayed 2nd night but hospital discharged 4hrs later. Even tho I breath I couldn’t swallow and almost OD from the drugs stacking up in body no intake no outtake. 2ER visits in 10days PostOp & I taking
My Pain meds (self detox) & revoveryin My own Hands, I got less “what I call Oh Shiny Brain” forgetfulness of one name destraction which I literally carried a basket w/ Phone, tv remote and other essentials, which now shows I was probably having reaction then. But my left arm got stronger and I was doing activity I couldn’t in a Year. And while not back to My Original Job I was able to do
Ubereats 1-3 hrs a day 5mths post surgery , hitch helped w/ isolation & Depression. Contrary to popular belief after few days its not as fun/glamorous they think it is, but I digress... now I’ll jump forward to end feb of this year, started having issues w/ left foot, pain between toes and ankle when I try pointing foot down, so my solution don’t do it, I can still walk semi normal w/out the pain if I work around it, then It started swelling up same place w/ burning pain accompanying it, not daily yet so while u comfortable and hindering more frequently wasn’t on worry/all connected yet radar. Because I thought it from poor circulation (diabetic)& fighting fungal growth (that’s a new issue btw) which can be symptomatic response) to being more then minor annoyance 5wks ago when all of a sudden like a flick of light switch My Entire Left Side started buzzing and numb simultaneously with extreme weakness, I FB neck, & wasn’t wasn’t as bad to not wait for reg doc appt in April... I loath going unless I have to go however i tumbled across link for metal allergiesb Nd got proverbial light bulb clarity moment that it’s connected, and I need to be seen. I just felt compelled to say your not alone in bizarre sensations, b/c while i found nothing that described the buzzing, tingling, weakness from many sources on fusion failure (which I know already) , equipment malfunction, or Metal allergy being
I’ll end here... I apologize for typos on my phone that I shattered screen 3days ago and for possibly reading my out of character public overshare of my life last 2yrs, I can finally speak on since my case against driver setttelee, which wasn’t enough to cover the medical which continues let alone Any thing else I’ve lost or endured..I’m a fighter tho I’ll make itmaybe not how I want... and So will You!