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Sciatic nerve lesion

Last reviewed dd mmm yyyy. Last edited dd mmm yyyy

Authoring team

The sciatic nerve supplies the hamstrings and all the muscles of the leg and foot - via the tibial and common peroneal nerves; and sensation to the lateral part of the leg below the knee, including the foot.

Damage arises most commonly from misplaced gluteal injections. Other causes include pelvic disease and severe trauma to the hip. Nerve entrapment is very rare.

The clinical features reflect it's motor and sensory distribution and may include:

  • foot drop
  • loss of power below the knee and loss of knee flexion
  • loss of ankle jerk and plantar response; not knee jerk
  • loss of sensation below knee on the lateral side

Dropping of the foot and contracture of the calf muscles should be prevented. An aluminium night-shoe should be worn at night and a shoe with plastic inserts during the day.


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