How to treat a spinal cord injury

A spinal cord injury refers to damage caused to any part of the nerves at the end of the spinal canal and the spinal cord itself. The largest percentage of spinal cord injuries result from motor vehicle accidents, sports injuries, falls and assaults. 

A spinal cord injury refers to damage caused to any part of the nerves at the end of the spinal canal and the spinal cord itself. The largest percentage of spinal cord injuries result from motor vehicle accidents, sports injuries, falls and assaults. automobile accidents, sports injuries, falls and assaults.

The spinal cord is located within the spinal column, a protective bony canal consisting of the sacrum and 24 vertebrae that support most of the body's weight. In turn, it is a long structure that begins at the end of the brain stem and reaches the lower part of the spinal column. It is made up of nerves that carry messages between the brain and the rest of the body.

A spinal cord injury means that patients are affected in many areas of their lives and, therefore, experience mental, emotional and social impairment. Because of this, medicine continues to study improvements and currently there is treatment and rehabilitation to help people lead an independent life. lead an independent life.

How is it produced?

Spinal cord injury can affect the spinal cord or affect the vertebrae or spinal nerves. Whether it affects the nerves or causes nerve dysfunction, it can occur in the following ways:

  • Shaking from a contusion or blunt trauma (such as a fall)
  • Pressure or compression from broken bones, swelling or pooling of blood (hematoma)
  • Partial or complete tears 

Types of spinal cord injury

The ability a person retains to control the limbs after a spinal cord injury is called the neurological level of injury. On the other hand, the severity of the spinal cord injury is referred to as "integrity", and is classified as follows:

  • Complete: When all ability to control movement (motor function) and all sensation (sensory function) are lost below the spinal cord injury. This is because the information pathways from the brain to the extremities are completely cut off.
  • Incomplete: when there is some motor or sensory activity below the area affected by the lesion. In this case, some information pathways remain unharmed, so it is possible to teach them certain functions. There are degrees or levels of incomplete lesion.

The types of paralysis due to spinal cord injury are:

  • Tetraplegia: Also known as quadriplegia, it is paralysis affecting the arms, hands, trunk, legs and pelvic organs due to spinal cord injury.
  • Paraplegia: this paralysis affects all or part of the trunk, legs and pelvic organs.

 

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Symptoms of spinal cord injury

Symptoms of patients who have suffered a spinal cord injury often present with neck or back pain when the spine is injured. They may also include:

  • Loss of muscle control and sensibility
  • Loss of mobility in the arms and legs or only in the legs.
  • Loss of control of the ability to urinate and defecate
  • Sexual dysfunction

Prognosis of recovery and treatments of spinal cord injury in TrainFES

The prognosis for recovery from spinal cord injury varies depending on the site of injury. There is a greater likelihood of recovery when paralysis is partial and in cases where movement and sensation begin to recover in the first week after the spinal cord injury. Despite the above, several studies have shown that recovery, in conventional therapies, is possible up to one year after the injury. However, TrainFES has treated many patients after one year.

The treatments for spinal cord injuries include: immobilization, surgery to stabilize the spine if required, and rehabilitation. The latter is focused on the patient regaining as much independence as possible and improving the activation and functionality of the limbs that are paralyzed.

A global rehabilitation optimizes and evaluates the treatment indicated for each person according to the spinal cord injury he/she presents. In this case TrainFES offers a program that accompanies patients throughout the process. Depending on the case, they can opt for:

  • 1 assessment with a physiatrist.
  • 1 evaluation with a neurorehabilitation kinesiologist.
  • 1 pelvic floor kinesiology assessment.
  • Follow-up sessions of neurological kinesiology, pelvic floor and occupational therapy.
  • Rehabilitation counselling with the aim of supporting and optimising the overall rehabilitation process of each user.
  • Constant support and assistance on the application and usability of the equipment, as well as training sessions. These can be done remotely, via video call and with support via email, WhatsApp, call.

 

spinal cord injury

TrainFES success stories

Recently, one of the patients who remains in rehabilitation at TrainFES, Camila Zúñiga, who had previously been in rehabilitation treatment for 8 years. 

The patient had received a diagnosis of spastic tetraparesisthat is to say, she could no longer move her arms and legs. After 18 months of rehabilitation with TrainFES, she has regained the recovered the ability to walk around her home without the aid of functional electrostimulation, relying on a walker.

The lesion presented by Camila is incompleteIn other words, some of the pathways leading from the brain to the extremities had the capacity to relearn certain functions that had been lost thanks to a process known as neuroplasticity.

From the first day, Camila trained rigorously, performing the kinesiological exercises kinesiological exercises the kinesiological exercises that were indicated to her along with the functional electrostimulation technology.

In his testimony she stresses that the most important thing for her was to regain her independence, her functionality.

The proper evaluation of each patient and his or her and his or her injury can determine the most most appropriate treatment which should include accompaniment throughout the process, since patients are going through physical and emotional processes. For this reason, TrainFES offers constant accompaniment along with assistance on how to use the applications and equipment.

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