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How do doctors treat spinal cord injuries?

| Sep 18, 2020 | Injuries |

The sudden impact you could sustain in an automobile accident may change your life, particularly if the collision injures your spinal cord. In the event such an injury occurs, you may require surgery to save your life and to prevent you from suffering any further damage to your health.

In all likelihood, if you suffer spinal cord damage from an auto accident, paramedics will take you to the hospital for treatment. Even if you get into an accident but walk away from it, you may want to get examined to make sure you did not sustain a spinal cord injury that could impact your life later on. The Mayo Clinic explains the treatment options available if you have in fact sustained a SCI.

Initial forms of treatment

After a serious injury, paramedics may place a collar on your neck to prevent you from moving and further damaging your spinal cord. Once the paramedics have taken you to the emergency room, the doctors will take measures to sustain your life. If you have breathing problems, you may need a ventilator to assist you. Doctors will also try to keep further complications from arising due to your injury.

Physicians may treat a SCI with medication and surgery. The goal of many spinal surgeries is to clear away debris like bone fragments that may have broken off during the initial injury. If your spine is unstable, your surgery team will try to stabilize it during the operation.

Further forms of treatment

If your condition is stable, your doctors should make sure you do not develop additional health problems like blood clots or pressure ulcers. As your recovery progresses, you may have a team of people that will help rehabilitate you. Depending on the severity of your injury, you may suffer permanent disability, but you might still have a chance of regaining some independence with exercise and other measures to build your strength. You may require medication to further treat your condition.

The impact of a spinal cord injury

Doctors currently do not have the ability to repair spinal cord damage, so any disability you suffer may become permanent. However, treating a SCI, in addition to preserving your life, can still prevent you from suffering additional damage to your spinal cord that can rob you of more motor function. The expenses involved in spinal cord treatment may become a factor if you sustain a spinal cord injury as a result of the negligence of another person.