Risk factorsBy Mayo Clinic staff
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The peroneal nerve controls the muscles that lift your foot. This nerve runs near the surface of your skin on the side of your knee closest to your hand. Activities that compress this nerve can increase your risk of foot drop. Examples include:
- Crossing your legs. People who habitually cross their legs can compress the peroneal nerve on their uppermost leg.
- Prolonged kneeling. Occupations that involve prolonged squatting or kneeling — such as picking strawberries or laying floor tile — can result in foot drop.
- Wearing a leg cast. Plaster casts that enclose the ankle and end just below the knee can exert pressure on the peroneal nerve.
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- NINDS foot drop information page. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/foot_drop/foot_drop.htm. Accessed Sept. 6, 2011.
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- Thompson PD. Gait disorders. In: Bradley WG, et al. Neurology in Clinical Practice. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Butterworth-Heinemann Elsevier; 2008. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-7506-7525-3..X5001-8--TOP&isbn=978-0-7506-7525-3&uniqId=230100505-57. Accessed Sept. 6, 2011.
- Neurological diagnostic tests and procedures. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/misc/diagnostic_tests.htm. Accessed Sept. 6, 2011.
- Sackley C, et al. Rehabilitation interventions for foot drop in neuromuscular disease (Review). Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. 2009:CD003908. http://www2.cochrane.org/reviews. Accessed Sept. 6, 2011.
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- Preventing falls and related fractures. NIH Osteoporosis and Related Bone Diseases National Resource Center. http://www.niams.nih.gov/Health_Info/bone/Osteoporosis/Fracture/prevent_falls.asp. Accessed Sept. 6. 2011.