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Spinal Cord Injuries

SPINAL CORD INJURY Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) is a life-changing event that can result in complex multi-system impairment. The average number of spinal cord injuries every year in the UK is approximately 1,000. Currently there are more than 40,000 people in the UK living with a spinal cord injury. CAUSES OF SCI | SPORTING ACCIDENTS 10.2% FALLS 45.5% ROAD TRAFFIC ACCIDENTS 39.2%| LEVELS OF INJURY An SCI injury can be classed as either "complete" or "incomplete". Complete injuries result in total loss of function - but incomplete ones allow partial function, or to regain function over time. The level at which the spinal cord is injured affects the seriousness of symptoms and the types of treatment offered. C1 High Cervical Nerves Injury here is the most severe of all C2 spinal injuries, because the nerves in this section send signals to the C3 head, neck, shoulders, arms and C4 diaphragm. C5 Quadriplegia: Partial or total paralysis from shoulders down C6 Damage to this area of the spine can C7 paralyse arms, hands, trunk and legs Trouble with breathing, coughing, and C8 control of bowel and bladder Treatments Surgery to add stability to the backbone Ventilator to help breathing Steroids to control blood pressure Physical therapy to enhance mobility Low Cervical Nerve This section controls arms and hands. Damage to this area does not affect someone's ability to breathe and speak on their own. T1 Thoracic Nerves All the nerves in the ribs T2 communicate with parts of the chest, thorax and abdomen. Injury here affects the muscles, upper T3 T4 chest, mid back, abdominal muscles T5 and legs. T6 Intercostal neuralgia: Sharp or dull pain in chest area T7 11 out of the 12 thoracic nerves are known T8 as the intercostal nerves T9 The last thoracic nerve is called subcostal T10 Treatments Therapy and pain management T11 Medication T12 Transcutaneous Electrical Neuro Stimulation Epidural Lumbar Nerves This section supplies innervation to the buttocks, groin, reproductive organs, colon, thighs, knees, legs and feet. Damage here can affect the lower body. L1 L2 Paraplegia: Complete or partial paralysis from the waist down L3 More common than quadriplegia Occurs when the middle or lower part of L4 the spine is damaged Injuries can result in some loss of function L5 in hips and legs and little or no control over bowel and bladder movements Treatment Surgery to reshape the spine Prescription medicine to reduce muscle spasm Physical therapy to enhance mobility S1 Sacral Nerves Injuries to this area are unlikely to cause long-term paralysis or disability. Spinal nerves in this area control signals to the thighs and lower leg/feet and external genital S2 S3 S4 organs. S5 SPINAL CORD SYNDROMES Anterior cord syndrome Lesions disproportionately affecting the anterior spinal cord Commonly due to lack of oxygen causing tissue death (infarction) Central cord syndrome Lesions affecting the centre of the cervical spinal cord, mainly central grey matter Commonly due to trauma, syrinx, or tumours in the central spinal cord Brown-Séquard syndrome One-sided spinal cord lesions Typically due to penetrating trauma Conus medullaris syndrome Lesions occur around L1 causing leg paresis, erectile dysfunction, urinary retention, hypotonic anal sphincter Commonly caused by injury in the lumbar nerve roots and malfunction with the conus meullarisa Cauda equine syndrome Occurs when the nerve roots are damaged at the caudal end of the cord Not a spinal cord syndrome, but mimics the conus medullaris syndrome SPECIALIST SCI CENTRES IN THE UK 1. The Queen Elizabeth Spinal Injuries Unit - Glasgow 2. The Golden Jubilee Spinal Injuries Unit - Middlesbrough 3. The Yorkshire Regional Spinal Injuries Unit - Wakefield 4. Princess Royal Spinal Injuries Centre - Sheffield 5. National Spinal Injuries Centre in Stoke Mandeville Hospital - Aylesbury 6. Rookwood Hospital - Cardiff 10 7. The London Spinal Injuries Unit - Stanmore 8. Duke of Cornwall Spinal Treatment Centre - Wiltshire 9. Midlands Centre for Spinal Injuries - Oswestry 10. North West Regional Spinal Injuries Centre - Merseyside TECHNOLOGIES & TREATMENTS Unfortunately there is no way to reverse the damage caused by SCI. However, treatment starts at the scene of an accident to prevent further trauma, where paramedics will use a rigid neck collar and carrying board to transport a patient to the hospital. There are a number of breakthrough technologies and treatments available to help people recover and live with SCI. Electric Wheelchairs - lightweight, comfortable, some can even climb stairs Computer Adaptations - help for limited hand function, some include voice recognition Electrical Stimulation Devices - use electrical stimulation to produce actions to control arm and leg muscles, allowing people to stand, walk, reach and grip Robotic Gait Training - an exoskeleton that helps to retrain walking ability, like a motorised bionic suit This infographic is intended for educational purposes and should not be substituted for professional and medical advice. Sources Shepherd Centre - Understanding Spinal Cord Injury, published 2015 Spinal Injuries Association - Introduction to Spinal Cord Injury 2015 Back-Up Charity Org - Transforming lives after spinal cord injury Merck Manuals - Overview of Spinal Cord Disorders by Michael Rubin 2014 Spinal Injuries Association - Preserving and Developing the National Spinal Cord Injury Service, Research Report, May 2009 Spinal Research Charity Organisation - Facts and figures, 2011 claim 500 00

Spinal Cord Injuries

shared by helloevery1 on Jun 11
This spinal cord injury infographic looks at some related facts, statistics, spinal cord injury treatments, and specialist treatment centres.





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