SPINAL CORD INJURY - WatsonsHealth

SPINAL CORD INJURY

Spinal cord injury is any injury to any part of the spinal cord or nerves toward the termination of the spinal canal, otherwise known as the cauda equina and then causes enduring changes in the functions of the nerves at the site of the injury.

A spinal cord injury may have lasting effects on your daily life functioning. You may feel the impacts of your injury emotionally, socially, physically and mentally.

Various researchers are happy that advances in research will make the repair of spinal cord injuries possible. Research is currently ongoing about spinal cord injury treatment. Meanwhile, solutions and treatment allow various people with spinal cord injuries to lead useful, free lives.

TYPES

Spinal cord injuries affect your capacity to control your extremities. It depends on the area of the injury along your spinal cord and the seriousness of damage to the spinal cord. The lowest level of the spinal cord is known as the neurological level of your injury. The seriousness of the injury is called completeness.

 

SYMPTOMS

Spinal cord injuries may give rise to the following signs and symptoms:

  • Loss or change of sensation, such as temperature sensation
  • Loss of bowel or bladder control
  • Exaggerated reflexes or spasms
  • Changes in sexual functioning and fertility
  • Pain or an a stinging sensation caused by damage to the nerve fibers in the spinal cord
  • Difficulty breathing and in coughing or clearing secretions from the lungs

There are also symptoms of an emergency that you have to watch out for. Seek medical help immediately if these symptoms are present:

  • Extreme back pain or pressure
  • Weakness, muscle incoordination or paralysis
  • Numbness, tingling or loss of sensation
  • Loss of bladder or bowel control
  • Difficulty with balance and trouble walking
  • Impaired breathing after injury
  • Twisting of the neck or back

DIAGNOSIS

The doctor will diagnose a spinal cord injury by obtaining a medical history and doing physical examination, as well as testing for sensory functioning and movement.

In cases of emergency symptoms, tests may be done such as x-rays to view spinal column problems, tumors or fractures. A computerized tomography (CT) scan may also be done to rule out more problems as well as a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

 

TREATMENT

There’s no genuine way that can reverse spinal cord injury. More research is being done on new treatments such as prostheses and medicines that may lead to nerve cell regeneration and improvement of nerve functioning after spinal cord injury. Treatment is also focused on prevent further spinal cord injuries and to bring back normal functioning.

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