I’ve been suffering from MS since 1999 and it is 7 years since I have experienced dropped foot problem. My left foot doesn’t work properly and I’ve kept on stumbling. In 2011 the Italian NHS provided me with a plastic device, called MOLLA DI CODIVILLA, that is used to mantain my foot up.
It is rigid and the foot cannot move: it is like putting your foot in plaster cast. So your muscles don’t work anymore and it is not easy to put it in shoes.
I couldn’t bear it and I started surfing the net to look for other solutions.
I found out the functional electrical stimulator : FES. It is largely used in England, Germany, USA but in Italy.
It is a device that, thanks to 2 electrodes put on the peroneal muscle, a light switch pasted under your shoe sole and a little electric box gives the electrical impulse to your muscle so your foot can actually move without dropping, giving you a more natural gait.
The advantages are that you can put the switch easily in every shoe and the muscle is stimulated so it remains active. I found out different ways to wear the FES putting the little box on boots, under the knee and in the jeans pocket, so I can wear sandals, boots, skirt or even bikini, even with the FES.
I use the Odstock Medical one, provided by the Salisbury hospital (UK).
I also tried the German Ottobock and the Ness, but I think they are too big and you cannot change the place of the electrodes at your convenience according to how you would need your foot to move.
With Ottobock and Ness the medic pastes the electrodes on a support that you put around your calf.