Spinal Cord Injuries and Disorders | Vibra Rehabilitation Hospital of Amarillo

Hello my name is Kevin Nicholson. I’m the Director of Therapy Services at Vibra
Rehabilitation Hospital in Amarillo, and today I would like to visit with you about the topic
of spinal cord injuries and spinal cord disorders. So the first thing we want to talk about is
what actually is a spinal cord injury? To answer that question it may be helpful
to think of the spinal cord as a set of train tracks. The train tracks carry messages from the brain
to the various areas of the body; the arms, the legs, and so forth. When something damages those tracks, the message,
or the signal, cannot travel across the damaged area, much like a train cannot travel across
busted tracks without wrecking. So in the case of spinal cord injury, the
loss of signals from the brain can lead to a number of problems such as paralysis, or
loss of the ability to move arms or legs, or maybe the loss of sensation in the arms
or the legs. The spinal cord can be directly injured due
to trauma, but it can also damaged by various diseases and disorders that we’ll also talk
about here today. On television and other media outlets, the
most common presentation of spinal cord injury that one will encounter usually involves a
traumatic injury. For example, a football player suffers a traumatic
event on the field that changes his life from that point on, or someone’s mother or father
has a terrible motor vehicle accident due to a drunk driver and they’re left paralyzed. While these traumatic types of injuries easily
attract the attention of the media, they’re really just a small part of the diseases or
disorders that can affect the spinal cord. For example, one common disease is multiple
sclerosis, or MS, as it’s called. This is a degenerative disorder that affects
the nerve fibers in the brain, and potentially the spinal cord. It’s actually the most common cause of neurological
debilitation in the young adult population in the United States. When multiple sclerosis affects the spinal
cord you will see typically various symptoms such as muscle weakness, or areas on the arms
or legs that are numb, or have pain, for example. Once the cause of the spinal cord injury or
disorder has been determined and treated, patients are often referred to a rehabilitation
facility such as ours in order to relearn many different aspects of their care. If you’re interested in more in-depth information
about spinal cord injury, there’s a very good resource, so you can go to unitedspinal.org
to access those resources and publications.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *