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Date of last update: 8/19/2017.

Forum Name: Surgery Topics

Question: muscular atrophy following dog bite


 robertavila - Tue Aug 07, 2007 7:13 pm

I am a 38 yo male. I have had 15 broken bones (all more than 20 years ago.) I never take drugs of any sort, except presc. steroids when needed. I have never had a surgery.

About 2 months ago, I was bitten on the left leg by a dog. The bite was a 'crush', not tearing my jeans, but left several teeth marks. the deepest mark failed to heal for several weeks.

This deep mark was initially about one-half inch long. The area below it was numb for about three inches below and two inches wide. It is still today numb about 1.5 inches below and 2 inches wide (so, about half the original affected area now has feeling.)

About 2 weeks after the bite, I thought I noticed a little depression in the muscle on the left side of my lower leg, about 2" lower than the end of my calf muscle, but on the left outside. Today I noticed it again, but this depression is much larger: it is approx. an oval with avg 2" diameter and .25" depressed.

The right leg does not match this.

So, I believe the nerve at the back of the lower leg has been damaged... can this produce muscular atrophy? Do I require surgery to repair?
 Dr. Chan Lowe - Wed Aug 22, 2007 2:47 pm

User avatar Hi Robertavila,

Damage to a nerve can most certainly cause the muscle it was supplying to shrink (properly called atrophy). Given that you have some numbness it is likely that some nerve damage has occurred.

I would recommend you see a neurologist for an evaluation and recommendations for treatment.

Best wishes.

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