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Avatar universal

Something I don't understand

Is it possible to have quadriceps weakness without any weakness below that point, say like foot drop? When my legs go weak, it's above the knee, usually in the quads but has also happened in the hamstring where my leg hyperextends.

Having said that, there have also been periods where one foot would slap the ground when I walked. Outside of that, I mostly get tightness, twitches, cramps and paresthesias from the knee down.

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338416 tn?1420045702
I think anything is possible.  I have an atrophied muscle on the outside of my knee.  It makes it very weak and more likely to give way.  It's a weird place to have a weak muscle, but it's all about which nerve has the damage, and where it goes to.

Now I have that weak right knee, a generally weak and buzzy right leg, and to make things even weirder, the leg can also be spastic.  It doesn't want to straighten out sometimes, and I'll end up walking with it bent slightly.  When I notice I try to stretch it out.
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645800 tn?1466860955
The foot slapping the ground is a sign of foot drop.
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Avatar universal
Yes, I had a slight case of that last summer when the thigh weakness kept me from standing more than 15 minutes at a time. Right now, I'm not noticing any lower leg/ankle/foot issues, other than my typical tendency to trip easily over nothing. But it's been this way about five years now, mostly in the summer. I can't wear thick-soled shoes any longer, or I end up twisting my ankles frequently.
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Avatar universal
Come to think of it, I do frequently catch my toe scraping the ground on swing through, which starts the stumble. Is it possible there could be a little intermittent foot drop that I was unaware of?
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645800 tn?1466860955
It took me several years to get my foot brace because my foot drop only occurred visibly  when I was tired. I finally got the foot brace when I finally saw my neuro when it was bad and he saw that my foot was turning in and had a bad foot drop.

Dennis
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Avatar universal
So do you only need it on occasion then? It's hard to time a neuro visit during an active symptom occurrence, especially one that's only occasional.

A chiro who observed my gait after finding L2/L3 dermatomal nerve damage on the right, commented that my right leg is much less stable than the left side. This is also the side that for 15 years at that point had shooting nerve pain when I'd bend over too fast (I thought it was from yanking the sciatic nerve through a tight hamstring). My gait is very off, everyone notices, even non-professionals. But it's been that way a long, long time. This is one time in my life that MS came up, because I had trouble with loss of balance and chronic neck/shoulder tension with wicked headaches too.

For years, I've had weakness in the quads, but not so much it interfered with ADLs to any degree. It only showed up after a workout as shaky noodle legs. Now I wake up that way some days. I always blamed being out of shape.

:-O
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645800 tn?1466860955
I am supposed to wear my brace all of the time. The main reason for this is that you never know when a bad foot drop will hit. Before I got the brace I was tripping over nothing several times a day even though the foot drop wasn't obvious. Since I got the brace I never trip over nothing like before.

Of course I don't really wear the brace all of the time. Each evening after I have my dinner I take off the brace because I don't do much walking after that. But I have noticed that after wearing the brace all day I can walk around my house without any tripping. I think this is because my leg has not gotten worn out during the day and eliminated the foot drop from being tired.

The last time I saw my MS Neuro he said I should also have a brace on my left foot now as I have been having episodes of tripping over nothing with that foot recently.

Dennis
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739070 tn?1338603402
HI,
I have weakness in my quads and tightness in my lower leg, same as you. PT has done wonders in remedying a lot of the weakness.  At this time  I do not have a foot drop (fingers crossed).

I do have an unsteady gait and the present time which is relieve with lots of PT time and neuroplasticity. I worked hard and regained the ability to do the tandem walk. My suggestion...wear your brace as instructed and seek care from a competent neuro literate PT person.

Ren
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Avatar universal
Maybe I should seek out a PT to nip this in the bud? Maybe they could help me with the endurance issue to?. It's been on my mind for a while now. I was thinking of going just for gait retraining to improve general biomechanics.

I tripped over my toes on the way down a flight of stairs at school today. Had I fallen, it wouldn't have been pretty.
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Avatar universal
An update on this. I did start PT for general overall conditioning hoping to increase my energy level and endurance. She did pick up on some weakness below the knee on the side my quads were giving out last time. In fact, that whole side from hip to toe is weaker than the other.
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