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Leg numbness post-colorectal surgery
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Leg numbness post-colorectal surgery

A 52-yr. old relative underwent resection of a portion of her rectum/colon a month ago.  The surgery itself went well, but she has been unable to independently lift her lower right leg ever since.  She has normal movement in the upper thigh, but experiences numbness in the knee area.  She had been administered an epidural, and was also in stirrups during the surgery.  We don't know which of these procedures, may have caused the numbness.  She currently must walk with the assistance of a cane.  How long does this weakness and numbness last, and what can be done to return her leg to normal mobility?
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Hi,
How is your relative now?
I think it is the epidural administration which could have caused the symptoms. Nerve Root Pain - nerve root pinching / irritation / compression / trapping is always associated with signs of nerve dysfunction (not working properly) such as pain, tingling, numbness, and weakness. This peripheral nerve pathology can be due to Diabetes, Prediabetes, Vitamin deficiency, and altered blood pressure status, any nutritional deficiency, and abnormal endocrine status, compression of nerve or impingement of nerve at time of exit from Vertebrae. In your relatives case it appears to me as compressive pathology or disturbance to nerve while doing procedure.
Nerves regenerate, or heal, at a rate 1 millimeter/day. The only nerves that can regenerate are the nerves outside of the spinal cord, or peripheral nerves. The nerves in the spinal cord, once damaged, cannot regenerate.
However, if the peripheral nerve is severely damaged or stretched it may never heal.
It will approximately 12 to 24 weeks to regain normal mobility. I think you should consult physiotherapy also for leg muscle to avoid any disuse atrophy.
Hope this helps.
Bye.
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