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Spine Disorders

  • By: ISA Content Team
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Spinal Cord Injury

  • Spinal cord injury (SCI)
  • Traumatic myelopathy
  • Traumatic SCI


A spinal cord injury (SCI) usually begins with a sudden, traumatic blow to the spine that fractures or dislocates vertebrae. The damage begins at the moment of injury when displaced bone fragments, disc material, or ligaments bruise or tear into spinal cord tissue. Most injuries to the spinal cord don't completely sever it. Instead, an injury is more likely to cause fractures and compression of the vertebrae, which then crush and destroy the axons, extensions of nerve cells that carry signals up and down the spinal cord between the brain and the rest of the body. An injury to the spinal cord can damage a few, many, or almost all of these axons. Some injuries will allow almost complete recovery. Others will result in complete paralysis.


  1. The following represents facts and figures about spinal cord injury (SCI) from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) 2008There are an estimated 10,000 to 12,000 spinal cord injuries every year in the United States.
  2. quarter of a million Americans are currently living with spinal cord injuries.
  3. The cost of managing the care of spinal cord injury patients approaches $4 billion each year.
  4. 38.5 percent of all spinal cord injuries happen during car accidents. Almost a quarter, 24.5 percent, are the result of injuries relating to violent encounters, often involving guns and knifes. The rest are due to sporting accidents, falls, and work-related accidents.
  5. 55 percent of spinal cord injury victims are between 16 and 30 years old.
  6. More than 80 percent of spinal cord injury patients are men

Educational Partners

To learn more about your spine. spinehealth, and available spinecare go to the International Spine Assocition (ISA) at The primary mission of the ISA is to improve spinehealth and spinecare through education. The ISA is committed to disseminating need-to-know information throught the World Wide Web in numerous languages covering many topics related to the spine, including information about spine disorders, spine heath, advances in technology and available spinecare

All health information posted on the site is based on the latest research and national treatment standards, and have been written or reviewed and appoved by the American Acedemy of Spine Physicians and/or International Spine Association physicians or health professionals unless otherwise specified.

The information provided on this site is designed to support. not replace,
the relationship that exists between patient/site visitor and his/her physician.