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Gait change since head injury

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Old 11-06-2015, 12:21 AM   #1
ConcussedGuy17
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Default Gait change since head injury

Has anyone else's gait been vastly altered since pre-injury? I now walk as if I have a pretty bad limp, but I am not sure why. I think it is because my balance is poor and I am always catching myself. I cannot even walk in a straight line.

I am a little concerned because the limp motion results in a gait with a fairly hard impact and quite a bit of head movement, which I think might be making my symptoms worse. Do you guys think that this could be the case? Also is this a common problem with people who have dizziness issues?
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Old 11-06-2015, 12:28 AM   #2
Lara
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Yes. I think my gait changes are due to my vertigo.

I posted this article in one of the stickies at the top of the forum a while back ...

I've not re-read it for a while but it might be interesting for you.

http://neurotalk.psychcentral.com/post1133164-88.html


http://www.archives-pmr.org/article/...712-7/fulltext

Incidence of Gait Abnormalities After Traumatic Brain Injury
Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
April 2009Volume 90, Issue 4, Pages 587–593

p.s. there are probably more recent studies since that one if you search for them in PubMed or other places.
I remember having a personal "wow" moment when I read this one above.
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Old 11-06-2015, 01:23 AM   #3
ConcussedGuy17
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Wow very interesting articles, I am glad to know that it is not uncommon. Do you think that this exaggerated motion could be aggravating my symptoms? I tried to prevent myself from limping like this, but it seems to be just the way I walk now.

I don't think the force caused by the swaying is enough to hurt me though.
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Old 11-06-2015, 01:48 AM   #4
Lara
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Do you think your problem is related to being dizzy or to something else?

I know that mine is a learned response because when my balance issues were at their worst it seems I changed the way I walk so that I don't fall. My feet are wider apart and I have a lot of problems with my feet now and also my calf muscles because I appear to be using muscles differently just to balance.

I also found a Webinar from the Vestibular Disorders Website in youtube. It's not directly associated with gait but it may be of interest to you since you mention dizziness.

>>> warning - the volume is really high on the video below. You'll need to turn it down. Ouch!

Concussion and Dizziness: How Are They Related
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PAgPtJ4crDw

Vestibular.org have some articles about gait.
If you type vestibular.org gait into your search engine it will bring up many varied articles including ones regarding vestibular therapy, gait analysis etc..

p.s. when I walk I try to focus on an object straight ahead of me so that I don't have too much head movement. I used to wear progressive lense glasses and i was moving my head up and down and too and fro just to see where I was walking and that made my balance much, much worse. I got rid of those and that helped me a lot as long as I keep focus on an object or mark straight ahead.
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Last edited by Lara; 11-06-2015 at 03:12 AM. Reason: added warning about volume on webinar
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Old 11-06-2015, 02:01 AM   #5
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I will definitely look into that. I think I have always had a pre-disposition for dizziness, but my concussion just made the more prominent.

I mean from a brain perspective though, do you think the swaying and higher impact walking could be hurting my brain?

Sorry for the continual question, talking about my anxiety with others makes me feel a lot better.
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Old 11-06-2015, 02:38 AM   #6
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I honestly can't see how it could hurt your brain, but I suppose there is the possibility that if you had neck problems it could affect the neck.
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Old 11-06-2015, 03:16 AM   #7
Mark in Idaho
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If you are concerned about the foot plant impacts having a negative impact on your recovery, I suggest you get some good running shoes with good resilient soles. This can take a lot of impact out of your foot plant.

There are some gait symptoms that are directly related to how the brain processes movement/proprioception, etc. More lift off the toes is not uncommon.

You may benefit from orthotics. They can help the foot support your weight better. The simplest would be the Dr Scholl's orthotic insoles that you can get at Walmart after standing on the Dr Scholl's orthotic measuring device. I have used similar orthotics for 30 years. They help the ball of my foot absorb more of my foot plant.

As Lara said, I doubt the impact is hurting your brain even though it may feel uncomfortable. A good Physiatrist (Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Doctor) knows how to diagnose gait issues related to neurological problems.
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Old 11-06-2015, 03:46 AM   #8
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I will definitely look into that Mark - thanks.

The problem is my anxiety magnifies this problem, and I know looking into it further would magnify that anxiety even more. So in your guys's opinions, there is absolutely no risk to my brain because of the limping?
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Old 11-06-2015, 03:58 AM   #9
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I would think it more important to figure out why you're limping.

You're not going to hurt your brain from having a limp.
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Old 11-06-2015, 11:24 AM   #10
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Are you limping due to pain or possible due to uneven hip/leg length..?

You may have gotten your c 1 c2 knocked out of alignment - and that may make a whole body tilt. also can cause dizziness..
Hips? shoulders even /level??
check in a mirror or have a friend compare when on flat floor bare feet or socks are best.

See an upper cervical chiro, or even an expert chiro that has training in atlas/axis..
youtube has videos so you can see what is is about..
more info-
www.upcspine.com
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