The spinal cord is a collection of nerves that are responsible for carrying signals between the brain and different parts of the body. A spinal cord injury is damage to any part of the spine that results in change in the ability of the spine to send and receive sensory or motor signals. A spinal cord injury is classified as:
Complete Injury: This involves a complete loss of function and sensation in the body parts.
Incomplete Injury: In this, partial body movement and sensation remains unaffected.
- Fall from a height
- Sports-related injuries
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Diving into shallow water
- Spinal Arthritis
- Decreased bone strength due to Osteoporosis
- Inflammation of the spine
- Pain and stiffness in the affected area
- Inflammation around the site of injury
- Difficulty walking and moving
- Muscle weakness
- Problems in maintaining body balance
- Complete or partial loss of movement
- Numbness or tingling sensation in the extremities
- Loss of bladder or bowel control
- Difficulty breathing and coughing
- Sensory and motor deficits
- The orthopedic doctor may diagnose a spinal cord injury through physical examination and evaluating the sensory and motor functioning of the patient.
- The spine specialist may also suggest imaging tests such as X-rays, CT scan or MRI, to determine the exact location and severity of the injury.
- Immobilization: The orthopedic surgeon may recommend traction to keep the spinal cord stable and properly aligned. The procedure involves using a metal plate or body harness to immobilize the head.
- Medications: The patient may be prescribed certain anti-inflammatory medications to reduce pain and inflammation around the site of injury.
- Surgery: Surgical treatment may be needed to remove elements compressing the spine such as fragments of bones, herniated discs or fractured vertebrae. The orthopedic doctor may also perform surgery to stabilize the spine and prevent any anatomical deformity.
Post-surgery, the orthopedic surgeon focuses on helping patients restore normal function of the spinal cord. This may include use of orthotic devices and muscle strengthening exercises to reinstate the fine motor skills essential in carrying out daily activities. The orthopedic doctor may also prescribe physiotherapy to assist in the healing process.
We, at OrthoTexas, provide complete diagnosis and treatment for spinal cord injury in Frisco, TX. To schedule an appointment with our orthopedic surgeons, you can call at (214) 618 – 5502 or visit 5757 Warren Pkwy, Suite 180, Frisco, Texas 75034.