5 Myths About Spinal Cord Injuries
Author: Nicholas Sutedja Date Posted:16 January 2018
Around 12,000 people in Australia today have a spinal cord injury (SCI) with 350 – 400 new cases recorded each year. The majority of spinal cord injuries are transport-related with 30% of people aged 15-24 years affected by this injury. However despite all of these statistics there are still some myths that people believe in when it comes to SCI so here are 5 myths and how untrue they are:
1. Spinal cord injuries are only caused by accidents
Although accidents do account for 46% of all SCI, with 51% of all people affected being motor vehicles occupants and 49% unprotected road users, there are other causes of SCI’s such as cancer, arthritis, infections, blood clots and degenerative spinal conditions.
2. If you suffer from spinal cord injuries it means you need a wheelchair
Now it may be ironic considering that this is a site that sells wheelchairs. However every SCI is different and that means different solutions. It’s how to predict how the SCI will come up as, but not all of them will require the use of a wheelchair.
Generally it depends on how severe the injury is. If the break is near the top of the neck it can even make breathing difficult while a break in the mid to lower back means that the patient will still be able to walk via braces or walking frames…perhaps even independently.
3. There are no treatments
Although the effects of spinal cord injuries are devastating and there are no ways to reverse what has happened it can be limited.
The swelling must be reduced on-site at the scene of the accident and once the inflammation physiotherapy and building muscle function will begin. This will allow the patient to regain the fine motor skills and learn now ways to do daily activities.
4. Age is a factor when it comes to spinal cord injuries
Some people believe that the younger you are, the easier rehabilitation will be. That is not true as every individual, every injury, is unique. Rehabilitation depends on social support, how it happened and other factors.
5. I will need to go to an aged care facility after hospitalization
Not true. A large number of people suffering from SCI can stay at their home.
Hopefully this article will debunk some of the myths that are floating around about spinal cord injuries. Here in AMS we have a wide range of products to help people suffering from this disease move independently again.