Hip Replacement Expert Comments on “Drop Foot” Side Effect

Cody Porcoro

Written by
— Updated on January 10, 2022

A patient diagnosed with severe arthritis in both hips elected to undergo a total hip arthroplasty on both sides, decided that his condition of living had already been severely degraded by his condition. Shortly after the procedure on his right hip, however, he developed a foot drop where his left leg became noticeably longer than his right. Though the patient could still walk with some discomfort, he alleged that his hip surgeon had performed the hip replacement procedures incorrectly. An expert in hip replacements was asked to review the case and opine on whether there was malpractice.

Question(s) For Expert Witness

  • 1. Do you routinely treat patients with total hip replacements?
  • 2. Have you ever published or lectured on foot drop or sciatic nerve palsy in hip replacement and preventative measures for it?

Expert Witness Response E-000662

I do over three hundred total joint replacements per year. Nerve damage post joint replacement is the number one reason joint replacement surgeons are sued. However, it is a known complication. In very few cases can a specific departure be pinpointed, though there are a few cases where surgeon error can cause the nerve damage. I would need to review the records and the pre and postoperative X-rays to make that call.

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