Recovery from Spinal Cord Injuries Essay

Recovery from Spinal Cord Injuries Essay

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On July 12th 2005, Heather Tice’s life changed forever. Heather was in the passenger seat of a car driving down a steep hill with her seatbelt unbuckled. The next thing she knew she was laying on the ground, covered in blood, unable to feel her own legs. Heather would later find out that she had received an injury to the C7 section of her spinal cord, which is located in the neck. Heather’s injury was incomplete, so despite the height of the injury she retains the use of her upper body (Car accident causes).
Every year approximately 12,000 people are newly affected by spinal cord injuries, and approximately 229,000 are living with an existing spinal cord injury (Spinal cord injury). Spinal cord injuries are a complex type of injury that is difficult to treat, but there are several methods through which physical therapy and technology can help patients with a spinal cord injury.
A spinal cord injury refers to any traumatic injury to the nervous tissue that runs throughout the spine. Spinal cord injuries can be in one of two basic types, incomplete, or complete (A brief overview). In a complete spinal cord injury there is a total loss of function in everything below the area of the injury. In an incomplete spinal cord injury the patient retains some function. In some cases, with a minor injury the patient may even suffer no loss of function at all. Other effects of spinal cord injuries include lack of ability to regulate automatic bodily functions, such as body temperature and blood pressure, muscular and bone degradation, and kidney stones (A brief overview).
Muscular and bone degeneration is something that also occurs in people who spend long periods of time in a low or null gravity environment, such as astronauts, and for muc...


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...July 2010. Web. 18 Jan. 2012. .
Lam, Tania. Et al. "Using Robot-Applied Resistance to Augment Body-Weight--Supported Treadmill Training in an Individual With Incomplete Spinal Cord Injury." Physical Therapy 91.1 (2011): 143-51. Print.
Shute, Nancy. "Spinal Implant Spurs Motion In Paralyzed Man : NPR." NPR : National Public Radio : News & Analysis, World, US, Music & Arts : NPR. 20 May 2011. Web. 18 Jan. 2012. .
"Spinal Cord Injury Facts." Foundation for Spinal Cord Injury Prevention, Care & Cure. June 2009. Web. 20 Jan. 2012. .
Valent, Linda J.M. Et al. "Effects of Hand Cycle Training on Physical Capacity in Individuals With Tetraplegia: A Clinical Trial." Physical Therapy 89.10 (2009): 1051-060. Print.

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