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Getting rid of knee hyperextension

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  • Getting rid of knee hyperextension

    when i walk my left knee hyperextenends but i also have foot drop on my left foot as well. does my knee snap back because of my foot drop and instability in my ankle or just cause my knee is weak or cause my hamstrings are tight? and also what muscles do i strengthin to stop from my knee snapping back? hamstrings, whole leg, what?
    C-5, 6 SCI. Took about 6 months to walk. Walking full time. Without any assistance since Nov. 2003 and will make a full recovery

  • #2
    mj

    Without evaluating you in person, here is my 2 cents:

    Weak hamstrings are usually the biggest culprit when it comes to knee hyperextension, however a weak gastrocnemius (calf) can be a big factor too since it passes over the knee joint as well. Considering the foot drop you have I would say the calf is probably as big or bigger issue than your hamstrings. Now to throw a third one into the mix, if your quadriceps is weak on that side you would have to lock out your knee by hyperextending it.


    Eric Harness, CSCS
    Founder/President
    Neuro Ex, Inc
    Adaptive Performance and Neuro Recovery

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    • #3
      Your problem sounds very similar to mine. I have hyperextension of the right knee and foot drop. I walk short distances with forearm crutches and have a hinged knee brace that helps with the hyperextension. The brace, however, is quite uncomfortable and difficult to wear for extended periods of time. I've been looking into the possibility of purchasing a brace for the foot drop, but I don't have access to a PT right now because of crappy insurance coverage.

      One thing that I've found which seems to help my overall strength and coordination is to swim on a regular basis. I can do exercises in the pool that I can not do on land. It's great exercise!
      "The truth will set you free. But first, it will piss you off." -Gloria Steinem

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      • #4
        You may want to try this for your foot drop. www.walkaide.com


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        • #5
          I also have the foot drop and hyper extension of the knee, but on the right side. I work on the recumbent bike for strength. This has helped me a lot as far as the hyper extension. I walk with a quad cane and only for short distances also.

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          • #6
            I also have foot drop on my right leg, and used to hiperextend my knee all the time.
            One day while in the pool I realized I could walk with both knees flexed to a normal angle if I focused on it. Practice in the water has made me not to automatically hiperextend outside the water.
            I believe this (hiperextending) is the way I learned to walk just after my injury. If your leg muscles recover, you will still need some "re-education" of the walking pattern. Try the pool.

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            • #7
              Brace for Foot Drop

              You may want to try Ness L300 Foot Drop System by Bioness
              BIONESS.COM

              1-800-211-9136 OPTION 2 Available by Rx Only

              Clinical evidence suggests the L300 may increase speed, stablility and social participation in certain patients with foot drop. The device may represent the most important technology available to assist you in progressing forward.

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              • #8
                thank u RAFS God Bless
                C-5, 6 SCI. Took about 6 months to walk. Walking full time. Without any assistance since Nov. 2003 and will make a full recovery

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                • #9
                  mj23 - I would look into some type of bracing to prevent the hyperextension while you are strengthening the muscles that support your knee (calf, hamstring, quad). I wear a rigid AFO with a good amount of dorsiflexsion - this prevents hperextension and corrects my foot drop so that I can keep a somewhat normal gait pattern while walking with forearm crutches.

                  If your knee hyperextends with every step, you are running a huge risk of damaging that joint. The Bioness L300 is great for correcting foot drop (I trialed it for a few months last year) but does little to protect the knee in cases where those muscles are still weak.

                  So anyway, my 2 cents is that you should talk to a PT about getting an AFO that will help with both issues while you continue to strengthen things like your quads, calves and hamstrings.

                  Hope this helps.

                  *************************************************************
                  *** c4/c5 incomplete *** Injured in Summer 2003 ***
                  *************************************************************

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                  • #10
                    problem is if i strengthen my calves then that will cause more foot drop
                    C-5, 6 SCI. Took about 6 months to walk. Walking full time. Without any assistance since Nov. 2003 and will make a full recovery

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                    • #11
                      Do you have any calf function? If not, then that weakness is probably contributing to the hyperextension. My last post was not as clear as it should have been there. I would suggest focusing on the hamstrings in that leg to begin with.


                      Eric Harness, CSCS
                      Founder/President
                      Neuro Ex, Inc
                      Adaptive Performance and Neuro Recovery

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Snowman
                        Do you have any calf function? If not, then that weakness is probably contributing to the hyperextension. My last post was not as clear as it should have been there. I would suggest focusing on the hamstrings in that leg to begin with.
                        calf weakness? my calf is small compared to my other calf. im able to point my toes down to make my calf bigger
                        C-5, 6 SCI. Took about 6 months to walk. Walking full time. Without any assistance since Nov. 2003 and will make a full recovery

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                        • #13
                          I have had hyperextension in both knees for a few years now and have been concentrating on building up the quads and glutes, which has helped. I can now walk with two canes w/o hyperextending. Every once in awhile one knee will pop back but I can correct it without falling on my face.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Teedog
                            I have had hyperextension in both knees for a few years now and have been concentrating on building up the quads and glutes, which has helped. I can now walk with two canes w/o hyperextending. Every once in awhile one knee will pop back but I can correct it without falling on my face.
                            I fully agree, strenghtening the quads and gluts allows for the knee not to be locked. When I walk and try not to hyperextend, I feel it as if the glut muscles take some of the weight off the knee. The gluteus medius in particular on the side of the hip, I can feel it burning!

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                            • #15
                              Concur with bioness. I have had 1 for over a year now. Recovering stroke 2008
                              Bioness resolved my foot drop & knee hyperextension problems. Can now walk unassisted with this wonderful device.

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