Inversion, eversion, dorsiflection, and plantarflexion are all terms
that desribe what you can do with your feet if all is well. I have
foot drop, and have trouble with dorsiflection, Dorsiflexion and
plantarflexion refers to extension or flexion of the foot at the ankle.
Dorsiflexion is the movement where the toes are brought closer to the
shin. Simply, I can't lift my toes up.
I have worn various brands of devices (Bioness is one example) which
apply an electrical signal to the nerves controlling the foot. They
make the toes invert and evert. That moves the toes to one side or the
I have trouble with all of these movements (in, out, up, down).
The electrical stimulator provided me with a treat. It moved my toes
for the first time in about 8 years.
If you evert the foot with the stimulator, it moves the toes out and
away from the center of your body. This helps you walk if it is timed
(with a footswitch or accelerometer) so that your nerve fires at the
right time in your gait, to get the toes out of the way when you are
putting your foot forward.
The reason eversion is used, and not dorsiflection (toes up), as it was
explained to me, is that the nerve controlling eversion is closer to
the surface and can be easily fired through the skin. The nerve in
question is fired by electrodes just below the knee on the outside
The problem with dorsiflection, I have been told, is that the nerve
which controls it is deep below your calf muscle on the inside, and is
not close enough to the skin. It may be that the electrodes would have
to be implanted under the muscle. Or it may be that to generate the
larger signal would require more power than the single double-A
So I have a new orthotic on order, which is spring-loaded at the heel,
and moves the toes upward when you release the springs and lift your
My brother was playing tennis and detatched his Achilles tendon. He
had to have an operation to re-attach it, and spent some time in a
cast. His muscles weakened, so a physiotherapist used an electrical
stimulator to strengthen them. He told me, the stimulator could
dorsiflect his foot. Maybe the AC wall-socket provides enough power
for the deep calf nerves.
I would be willing to carry around a bigger battery if that is what is
needed to dorsiflect my foot. I would also be willing to undergo
whatever operation is needed to implant the electrodes.
I really want to walk again.
I also have trouble lifing up my leg at the thigh. There is also a
device, which I also can't afford, which is supposed to help fire that
I also understand there are ways you can use your smart-phone's
accelerometer to reduce your dizziness and help with your
proprioception. I would like to try those apps as well. I
think with some retraining, some of the symptoms of MS can be
I also use electro-stimulation to help with my foot circulation by
firing the muscles in my foot.