Functional Electrical Stimulation in the treatment of foot drop

Are you looking for advanced management for your drop foot? Consider Functional Electrical Stimulation!

Foot drop is the inability to lift the foot and toes when walking. It can occur for many reasons such as;

  • An Injury to the spinal cord
  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Stroke.

There are many different treatment options available to address foot drop including

The ultimate goal of treatment is to improve gait (Walking) biomechanics by reducing altered musculoskeletal stress.

FES in the treatment of foot drop involves stimulation of the peripheral nerves that supply the paralysed muscles using electrodes placed on the surface of the skin. In the case of foot drop the peroneal nerve is stimulated resulting in dorsiflexion and eversion of the ankle. this contracture of the muscles is synchronised with the gait (walking) cycle so that the stimulators are activated in swing phase (when the affected foot is off the ground) and deactivated in stance phase (when the affected foot connects with the ground). This can lead to a more natural gait pattern and reduce the risk of trips and falls.

Studies have shown that FES is effective in improving many aspects of walking for patients with foot drop caused by various neurological conditions. It is considered a practical, long term and cost effective treatment of drop foot.

FES devices are assessed and fitted by trained clinical professionals and are tailored to each individuals gait pattern. The FES devices usually include a battery power source, a stimulation unit, electrodes and a mechanism to turn the stimulator on and off as needed. Our specially trained Total Body Orthotics clinicians are qualified to assess and fit the Bioness FES device system. The Bioness device is worn around the leg positioned just below the knee, acceleration sensors monitor movement patterns in all three planes and a new learning algorithm detects the respective changes in movement and can provide stimulation within 0.01 seconds. The Bioness L300 Go can control both the lifting of the foot as well as its inward and outward rotation within a single electrode.

If you have any questions about the Bioness FES system or would like to find out more, please contact us here at Total Body Orthotics for guidance. If you have any questions you can also contact a member of our team using our online enquiries form. You can also email us at

Our specialist, fully qualified clinicians are available to travel to you and carry out a full assessment and trial of the device.



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