Monthly Archives: September 2004
Silk ties sold exclusively in J.C. Penney department stores that are inspired by drawings contributed by celebrity friends of Christopher and Dana Reeve as well as by individuals who are living with spinal cord injuries. Four percent of the proceeds from sales are donated to the Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation.
Christopher Reeve Collection: The ties first became available in Fall 1998 and included designs from Paul Newman, Ted Danson, Glenn Close, and Dana Reeve.
Motor vehicle crashes rank 1st at 38.5% followed by acts of violence at 24.5%; falls at 21.8%; sports at 7.2% and all others at 7.9%.
These figures are for all injuries reported to the National Database since 1990. The percentage of cases due to acts of violence and falls have increased steadily since 1973.
Partial or complete loss of function, especially when involving the motion or sensation in a part of the body.
Spinal cord injury disconnects the brain from the spinal cord below the injury site. The spinal cord below the injury site does not die unless it has been damaged by loss of blood flow (ischemia). The lower spinal cord becomes hyperactive because spinal cord injury interrupts not only excitatory but also inhibitory connections to the cord. The spinal cord above the injury site also may become hyperactive, producing abnormal sensations.
Recovery takes a long time. Most recovery occur within 6 months but many people continue to recover function for a year or more.
A recent poll of the CareCure Community suggests that 61% recovered function more than one year after injury. In another poll, 16-18% of people who are “complete” spinal cord injury recovered additional function 3 or more years after injury.
The types of disability associated with SCI vary greatly depending on the severity of the injury, the segment of the spinal cord at which the injury occurs, and which nerve fibers are damaged.
Most people with SCI regain some functions between a week and 6 months after injury, but the likelihood of spontaneous recovery diminishes after 6 months. Rehabilitation strategies can minimize long-term disability.
Many doctors tell patients and families that recovery does not occur after spinal cord injury. This is not true. Recovery is the rule, not the exception after spinal cord injury.
• Segmental recovery. Most patients recover 1-2 segments below the injury site, even after so-called “complete” spinal cord injuries. For example, a person with a C4/5 injury may have deltoid function on admission and then recover biceps (C5), wrist extensors (C6), and perhaps even triceps (C7) after several months, and the associated dermatomes.
Sexual function, as in all other human bodily systems, is controlled by the central nervous system. Thus, any injury to the central nervous system will affect sexual function.
The question is to what extent function and sensation will be affected with injuries at various levels and degrees of severity. Also, in what ways do the symptoms manifest themselves in males v. females.
Recovery is the rule and not the exception after spinal cord injury. The probability of recovery is high, especially after “incomplete” spinal cord injury.
Clinical trial data indicate that if a person had even slight sensation or movement below the injury site shortly after injury, they will recover an average of 59% of the function they lost and, if they receive high-dose methylprednisolone, they will recover an average of 75% of what they had lost.
The cord in humans may be likened to a coaxial cable, about one inch in diameter, and is a continuation of the brain.
It looks like firm, white fat; nerves extend out from the cord to the muscles, skin and bones, to control movement, receive sensations and regulate bodily excretions and secretions.
The 31 pairs of spinal nerves divide the cord into the following segments: 8 cervical, 12 thoracic, 5 lumbar, 5 sacral, and 1 coccygeal.