The crazy doctor from the long-running series is well known for his ability to eat Vicodin like candy, and his distinctive cane inspires some of the series' more comical moments.
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However, his limp has never been explained in the main series. It turns out he, like his patients, is the victim of an unusual and hard to diagnose disease.
In the show's pilot episode, a patient asks House why he walks with a cane. He explains to a patient that he suffered from a leg muscle infarction. An infarction occurs when blood supply is cut from an area. A heart attack is a myocardial infarction, and a cerebrovascular infarction is a stroke. His infarction damaged the tissue in his leg, causing severe pain and limiting his ability to walk.
House claims that it took three days to diagnose his condition, which isn't surprising. First described in medical texts in 1965, this illness was garnering more attention from the medical community about the same time the pilot was written. Almost all cases of leg muscle infarction happen to those with previous complications from nerve and eye damage due to diabetes. Like his patients, what could have been easily treated ended up causing his body severe damage because he couldn't be diagnosed. The only symptom of this is severe leg pain, which could be explained by a number of more common ailments.
Posted 2842 day ago