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Rehabilitation

Dorsiflex inability following knee replacemen

10/20/2008

Question:

My wife fell badly breaking both tibia and fibia bones requiring a full knee replacement surgery. Since the surgery she has not been able to dorsiflex her foot. The doctors believe the nerve may have been stretched or compressed and believe it will come back in time meanwhile she has been fitted with a brace. Would appreciate any thoughts.

Answer:

For now, the brace will make her safe with walking so it is worth having and using. Nerve damage can happen with this type of injury and it should come back but it is possible that there is scar tissue around the nerve. If the motion does not start to come back within 6-9 months, I would seek physical therapy to encourage nerve regrowth and/or break up the scar tissue.

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Response by:

Tammy S Wadsworth, PT MS OCS Tammy S Wadsworth, PT MS OCS
Sports Medicine Team Member
Clinical Instructor at The School of Allied Medical Professions
College of Medicine
The Ohio State University