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Spinal Cord Injury News

Spinal Cord Injury News Articles

Paralyzed Veterans of America Launches New Website Documenting Air Travel Experiences of People with Disabilities

Published: January 28, 2016

airaccess30-orgWASHINGTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–In honor of the 30th anniversary of the Air Carrier Access Act, Paralyzed Veterans of America (Paralyzed Veterans) has launched a new website where individuals with disabilities can share their air travel experiences, both positive and negative. The new website can be found at www.airaccess30.org and is endorsed by Paralyzed Veterans and seven other disability organizations—United Spinal Association, Easter Seals, National Disability Rights Network, Autistic Self Advocacy Network, National Multiple Sclerosis Society, National Council on Independent Living, and The Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law. Continue Reading »

Controlling Immune Response in Spinal Cord Injury Patients

Published: January 27, 2016

human's thoracic-lumbar spine and inflammation at spineThe immune system of spinal cord injury patients can be controlled using a family of therapeutic stem cells, according to findings published in Scientific Reports.

Researchers from Case Western Reserve University studied the therapeutic stem cells, known as multipotent adult progenitor cells (MAPC) in order to observe their qualities and effects on spinal cord injury patients’ immune systems. Continue Reading »

A Life Repurposed

Published: January 26, 2016 | Spinal Cord Injury:

Ryan Atkins and Stephanie PerryRyan Atkins was on path to graduate from UC when a devastating 2009 car accident left him paralyzed from the shoulders down. Six years later, he completes the journey.

THAT FALL PROMISED TO BE HIS BEST EVER.

Ryan Atkins was in his third year at the University of Cincinnati on a full scholarship through the prestigious Carl H. Lindner Honors-PLUS business program. His beloved UC football team was undefeated that season and on their way to the Sugar Bowl. Thanksgiving break loomed, bookended by a jaunt to New York for a college conference and a trip to Europe that spring. Continue Reading »

One Small Step

Published: January 25, 2016 | Spinal Cord Injury: ,

Darek FidykaA paraplegic undergoes pioneering surgery.

When a spinal cord is damaged, location is destiny: the higher the injury, the more severe the effects. The spine has thirty-three vertebrae, which are divided into five regions—the coccygeal, the sacral, the lumbar, the thoracic, and the cervical. The nerve-rich cord traverses nearly the entire length of the spine. The nerves at the bottom of the cord are well buried, and sometimes you can walk away from damage to these areas. In between are insults to the long middle region of the spine, which begins at the shoulders and ends at the midriff. Continue Reading »

Severed spinal cord no barrier for former rodeo rider

Published: January 22, 2016 | Spinal Cord Injury: , ,

Steven ElliottIN THE final minutes of 2003 at a New Year’s Eve rodeo at Townsville’s Black River, Steven Elliott bucked off a bronc called Spaghetti Western and partly severed his spinal cord.

He welcomed New Year in Townsville Hospital as a quadriplegic. His C6 and C7 vertebrae had dislocated and damaged his spinal cord.

Mr Elliott, 39, is in a wheelchair, but you wouldn’t know it, hardly. The chair itself, covered with bulldust and with a dusty, oilskin-covered water bottle on the foot bar, looks more like something out of a Mad Max movie. Continue Reading »

“My everyday life is not ‘legendary’, any more than yours is” -Tim Rushby-Smith

Published: January 18, 2016 | Spinal Cord Injury:

Tim Rushby-Smith with wife and daughterWhy should taking my kids to the beach be a source of inspiration? There’s so much more we could talk about than the fact I’ve left the house.

I was on the beach with my family recently. As I made my way along the sand watching my kids in the surf, a man playing cricket with his son called out to me. “It’s great you’re getting out and about. You’re a legend. A real legend.”

I smiled back, somewhat baffled, and continued on my way. I was well up the beach before I had decoded his comment. My mere presence on the beach had so filled this man with admiration that he felt moved to place me in the company of Achilles. Continue Reading »

Stem cell treatment could help paralyzed patients move

Published: January 15, 2016 | Spinal Cord Injury:

Louis TontodonatoLouis Tontodonato’s hopes and dreams may well lie in a virtual coin flip, a digital roll of the dice.

Paralyzed from the neck down, the 20-year-old Naples, Fla., man has enrolled in the first clinical trial testing the ability of stem cells to repair spinal cord injuries and restore sensation and movement in quadriplegics. Early studies in animals and humans have had remarkable results, enabling patients to resume everyday tasks they thought had been lost forever. If those early effects are validated, the treatment has the potential to drastically improve the quality of life and independence of thousands of spinal cord injury patients. Continue Reading »

Kessler Foundation and NJIT Secure $5M Grant to Study Wearable Robots

Published: January 7, 2016

Study Wearable RobotsA joint team from Kessler Foundation and the New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) is developing new applications for wearable robotic exoskeleton devices with a $5 million federal grant from the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living and Rehabilitation Research.

Researchers from the two institutions are working together on the next generation of robotic exoskeletons to improve mobility and to enable safer, more independent functioning for people with spinal cord injuries (SCI), Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy and stroke. The team will also evaluate the efficacy of existing robots for restoring and expanding mobility to upper and lower extremities. Continue Reading »

Despite paralysis, Trojan Jack Jablonski is making a name in hockey, the sport he loves

Published: January 5, 2016 | Spinal Cord Injury: ,

jack-jablonskiInjured as a high school player, the USC communications major is working off the ice with the LA Kings

An on-ice injury during a high school game in 2011 left Jack Jablonski — now a USC communications student — paralyzed from the chest down. But that hasn’t stopped him from pursuing a career in the sport.

Jablonski is interning this season with the Los Angeles Kings as part of the communications department and working in the press box at Staples Center on game nights. Continue Reading »

Paralyzed ex-football player celebrates injury’s anniversary: ‘I was reborn on that day’

Published: January 1, 2016 | Spinal Cord Injury:

Kenneth JenningsKenneth Jennings doesn’t see why he shouldn’t celebrate the day he took his final steps and moved his arms for the last time.

He even has a term for it.

“I just celebrated my 27th re-birthday,” Jennings said.

On Oct. 8, 1988, Jennings, then a junior at Simeon High School, suffered a broken neck on the opening kickoff of a game against Corliss. The collision left him a quadriplegic. He faced a future unable to move anything from the neck down. And it wasn’t supposed to be a long future. At the time, doctors gave him only 10 years to live.

Jennings, though, never views that day as the worst in his life. Quite the contrary. Continue Reading »