You asked: How do you care for a patient with spinal cord injury?


What does a spinal cord injury nurse do?

Nurses are an integral part of the spinal cord injury (SCI) rehabilitation team and provide significant education to the patient and family about the intricacies of living with SCI, as well as help manage the care process.

How do you care for a paraplegic patient?


  1. Avoid prolonged pressure; turn frequently.
  2. The bed should be clean, dry, smooth and flat.
  3. Maintain adequate protein intake.
  4. Large decubitus ulcers should be repaired surgically.

What is the proper position for clients with spinal cord injury?

The patient is best treated initially in the supine position. Occasionally, the patient may have been transported prone by the prehospital care providers. Logrolling the patient to the supine position is safe to facilitate diagnostic evaluation and treatment.

Does a spinal cord injury shorten your life?

Life expectancy depends on the severity of the injury, where on the spine the injury occurs and age. Life expectancy after injury ranges from 1.5 years for a ventilator-dependent patient older than 60 to 52.6 years for a 20-year-old patient with preserved motor function.

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How long does it take to walk after spinal cord injury?

The time period a patient needs to rehabilitate depends on the patient’s injury and ability to heal. Some patients can take a few weeks to regain the ability to walk, while others take several months or longer.

What parts of the body can be paralyzed from a spinal injuries?

Also known as quadriplegia, this means that your arms, hands, trunk, legs and pelvic organs are all affected by your spinal cord injury. Paraplegia. This paralysis affects all or part of the trunk, legs and pelvic organs.

What are key points of nursing care following a spinal cord injury?

Initial care – immobilisation:

  • Immobilize the entire spine of any patient with known or potential SCI.
  • Immobilize neck with a hard collar. …
  • Use log roll with adequate personnel to turn patient while maintaining spine alignment.

How do you assess a spinal injury?

Perform an X-ray as the first-line investigation for people with suspected spinal column injury without abnormal neurological signs or symptoms in the thoracic or lumbosacral regions (T1–L3). Perform CT if the X-ray is abnormal or there are clinical signs or symptoms of a spinal column injury.

What is the life expectancy of a paraplegic?

Individuals aged 60 years at the time of injury have a life expectancy of approximately 7.7 years (patients with high tetraplegia), 9.9 years (patients with low tetraplegia), and 12.8 years (patients with paraplegia).

Can paraplegics control their bowels?

With a spinal cord injury, damage can occur to the nerves that allow a person to control bowel movements. If the spinal cord injury is above the T-12 level, the ability to feel when the rectum is full may be lost. The anal sphincter muscle remains tight, however, and bowel movements will occur on a reflex basis.

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