Friday, January 24, 2014

Guillain-Barre Syndrome And Foot Deformities

Guillain-Barre syndrome is a polyneuropathy that has associated muscle weakness in the upper and lower extremities, respiratory muscle weakness, and respiratory paralysis.
Recovering from the syndrome is possible and patients with mild cases may feel better at the end of a month. Patients who have severe cases  see a longer recovery time, typically years, with residual effects from the illness.
Diagnosis of the syndrome is made with the association of a preceding or accompanying illness that is along the same strains with polyradiculoneuropathy, muscle weakness, and cerebral fluid analysis.
Foot deformities associated with Guillain-Barre syndrome can be put into two categories: those that develop early, and those that develop later as the disease progresses.
Early foot problems include muscle weakness, with pain in the muscles of the thighs, legs, and toes. This pain can be unbearable at times. Treatment should be directed towards easing the pain with analgesics and physical therapy. The position of the lower thigh is important and can be supported by night splints at first and then orthotics. Until muscle strength has been achieved, these devices will be necessary.
Full recovery of the muscles can take up to 24 months. After this time, the likelihood of gaining any more strength and function should not be expected. In patients where muscle weakness is still experienced, the most common problems are foot drop and deformities secondary to the muscle imbalance.
Foot drop can be treated with orthotics and appropriate tendon transfers. Triple arthrodesis has been used to correct some foot deformities, which may include bunions due to muscle weakness.
If you need foot or ankle surgery and do not currently see a podiatrist, call our Bristol office to make an appointment.
Richard E. Ehle, DPM
Connecticut Foot Care Centers
Foot Deformity Doctor in CT
Podiatrist in Bristol, CT
Visit our website, like our page on Facebook, and follow my tweets on Twitter.