Our spinal surgeons have extensive experience treating spinal trauma.
What is Spinal Trauma?
Spinal trauma refers to the damage or injury to a part of the spinal cord. It may or may not result in spinal fractures. It can occur anywhere along the spine, including the cervical vertebrae, thoracic vertebrae, the lumbar vertebrae, or the sacrum.
If spinal trauma occurs to the nerves at the end of the spinal canal, it may lead to permanent loss or reduction in sensation, motor strength, and other bodily functions in the tissues below the site of injury.
Spinal trauma signs & symptoms
The symptoms of spinal trauma vary depending on the site of injury. The common signs and symptoms of spinal trauma include:
- Pain at the site of injury
- Weakness, paralysis, or loss of sensation in the arms or legs
- Loss of bowel and bladder control
- Involuntary urination
- Sexual difficulties
Spinal trauma common causes
The common causes of spinal trauma include accidents, sports injuries, and falls. Spinal trauma may also occur due to a sudden blow to the vertebrae.
The common risk factors for spinal trauma include:
- Engaging in risky behaviors such as diving into extremely shallow water or playing adventure sports without using proper safety gear
- Athletic activities like impact sports
- Vehicular accidents
- Having a joint or bone disorder such as arthritis and osteoporosis
- Acts of violence that involve knife wounds
- Alcohol abuse
- Diseases of the spinal cord such as cancer
Treatments / Surgical options
Specific treatment of spinal trauma depends on the location of the injury or fracture, its severity, and the impact of the injury on the nearby tissues, especially nerves.
The treatment of spinal trauma is aimed at realigning the bones and maintaining the alignment until the bones have healed.
Before surgery, the doctor may recommend some laboratory tests such as taking a blood sample to assess the patient’s general health.
Surgery may be recommended for patients who develop neurological injuries due to spinal trauma. Surgery may also involve the removal of the bone and disc materials that are compressing the neural structures and stabilization of the spine and surrounding structures to minimize additional trauma.
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