Spinal Cord Injury

Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by Selva on Oct 2, 2012 12:05 pm

Hi all

I need help in finding out more about spinal cord injury. I would greatly appreciate if anyone here had spinal cord injury and recovered fully from it?

My dad fell from his bicycle and hit his back on a wall. He had his spinal cord surgery on Sept 14th 2012. He is still in the hospital. At first he was not able to move his hands and anything from waist down. Now, he is moving his hands but not his fingers and his legs. He is devastated! He is an active guy and now he is lying in bed dependent on others. I appreciate if anyone could share their story on the recovery process so that i can quote and tell him about other successful recovery stories to him. He is down and by me telling him all the stories might boost his confidence. Please kindly share.

Thank you so much!!

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by Mark_2098591 on Oct 4, 2012 9:23 am

SCI is different for everyone. Injuries are unique and so too is "recovery". Full recovery is unfortunately very rare. We are all going to be deaing with at least some issues from here on out. But for what is worth here is my story.
I was injured 12/7/11. I fell and dislocated my spine between T12 and L1. I was told that I would never walk again. I have been blessed with a great deal of functional return. I have dedicated most of my free time to working out and trying to strengthen everything that has returned. I am now walking using crutches and get around very well. I am still hoping for more return but know that isn't really up to me or my determination. We have to make the most of what we have.
I am still plagued with a loss of bowel and bladder function, pain, fatigue, etc. I do not expect to "recover" fully. I am stoked with what I have and have been since my accident. I could've died and being able to hug my wife and kids was enough to make me realize that we need to be happy with the what we have. Many are not as fortunate as me.
I too was an avid athlete. I am now back out surfing (on my knees) ,biking, hiking, ccoking, and working. It isn't the same as before my injury, but I will take it. Let your father know life isn't over and understand that this is going to be tough and a long road, but that he can still be the same guy he always was though he may have to make some adjustments. No one knows what he will get back. So don't listen to anyone who says otherwise. Work with what you get and learn to do the most at every level. Visit my blog at markflounlacker.blogspot.com to check out more on my story. Good luck and God bless.

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by Ash on Oct 6, 2012 3:22 pm

Hi Selva, I\'m really sorry to hear about your dad :-(I the central nervous system is tricky on how the same injury can have 2 totally different outcomes. Right now is tough and it seems like he has a great daughter and hopefully behind you there is a great support system! Its make or break time which may sound heartless, but its the truth! You will find out who\'s there for you as well as your father. I\'m not sure at what level he was injured, but I hope my story will help you help your dad get through this difficult transition in life! I was injured in a car accident when I was 18 and I broke C-1,C-4,C-5, and exploded C-6. I was in the hospital for about 6the months with other medical issues arise, so unfortunately I didn\'t get much rehab. My accident was more of a break process in life....that\'s why I mentioned the make or break phase. My parents ended up getting a divorce why I was 4in months into my hospital stay. Not only did my life change I had many other issues and not one if them were within my control! The only thing I had control over was how I looked at things and how I conducted myself. I\'m now 28 and it will be 10 years since the car accident and I live on my own, am attending online classes in college and have a wonderful boy who is 3 years old! I was very active in life before my accident with sports and just life.... I went to high school and college while working in the emergency room at the hospital in my town all at once. I haven\'t updated my profile on here, but plan to so I can reach out to others just like yourself for hope and just support! Contact me anytime and id like to share more. Hang in there and life is anything but over for your father...all you can do is be his helping hands and his support!

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by mark_2019754 on Oct 7, 2012 10:24 pm

Hi selva I may be able to help you or at least give you some hope. On august 20,2011 I fell 20 feet from a tree and broke my back. I had an L1, L2 bust fracture and spent the next two months in the hospital and rehab. On my return home I had bed soars and was still unable to get out of bed for two more months. The doctors and surgeons told me that I would never walk again. I had a few choice words for them and told them that I would walk again and that I would never stop trying. On march 31st 2012 my left leg began to move. It started no more than the width if your finger but none the less it was moving and gave me new hope and renewed the determination that I already had. I still continue to go to therapy and with the help of a set of leg braces I have accutully take three steps in a demo set of braces. I still am fighting the insurance co. to get the braces that will allow me to walk again. Even though I don't have the braces I still work everyday my legs continue to get stronger and I have yet to hit a plateau. Now I can't tell you for sure that your day will walk again but what I can tell you is never give up hope and as long as he has that theres always a chance. Right now your dad has two choices he can lay in bed and get weaker and allow people to take care of him for the rest of his life or he can fight and try to make the best of what he has left. He can find new ways of doing things and he will continue to get stronger and who knows he may regain the use of all his parts. The only thing that is for sure is that as long as hope is alive he will have a fighting chance like the rest of us. I hope that this helps you in any way and we are always here if you need help or advice from some of these people here. As I am fairly new I may not be the best person to ask but I will do what I can to help sincerly Mark

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by Selva on Oct 9, 2012 12:23 pm

Dear Mark

Thank you so much for sharing your story. It means a lot to me. I am sorry about your accident. I shared your story with my dad and it gave him hope. The doctors are saying that he have less chances of walking. Everytime he hears that, he feels very upset. He loses all his confidence. I read your email to him few days ago and he was very hopeful and happy to hear your words. Thank you so much. I really owe you! Hope everything will go well for you. Take Care. GOD bless you!


RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by Selva on Oct 9, 2012 12:35 pm

Hi Mark

There is another Mark who shared his story too...I am surprised to see two 'Marks'! Anyway, thank you so much for sharing your story and giving me and my dad hope that there is still a chance for him to recover. All these are very new to us and we are still adjusting to the fact that he is bedridden. I am so sorry about your accident. I am glad that you are doing so much better. My dad is slowly moving his left leg but not so much his right. He is moving his hands but not his fingers. Hopefully, in time he should be able to walk. The doctors are saying that he may not regain everything. Things like these are upseting him a lot! This is why i am seeking the advices/stories of people who made it. Sharing all these stories helps my dad boost his confidence. And it did. I really have to thank all the people who responded to me.

Mark I wish you all the best and may GOD bless you. Thanks again!


RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by mark_2019754 on Oct 9, 2012 7:46 pm

selva I'm glad we could help you and give your dad so hope and maybe just brighten his day just a little. Just remember its a long road and takes alot of time and patience. There will be those days when you just want to rip the hair out of your head and he will have the same lol. Its very normal just don't give up and if he has movement that is great now he just has to work what he has. Its alot of repetetive motion but before you know it things will be getting better. I found its a good idea to video tape some of the earlier work outs so that in a month you can look back and see the progress that you have made. I wish I would have thought of that back when this first happened because I sure have come a long way from that. If you would like my e-mail is mdlugozima01@yahoo.com  I would love to hear how things turn out for your dad. You can also keep it in case you have any other questions that I might be able to help with sometimes I don't always get back to this site as much as I should. Just remember that there is always hope, never give up , and always think outside of the box it will come in handy for alot of things when it comes time to modify things later lol . Glad I could help Mark

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by Mark_2098591 on Oct 10, 2012 8:14 am

Hey this is the first Mark. This is so early on that I am sure that your dad is just freaking. He needs to know that he cannot think about the end of this now. No matter if he recovers in record speed, it will be a while before he is anywhere close to pre injury. This is a long road. It is not like spraining your ankle. This injury effects everything muscle wise. Right now I ambulate very well but my balance is jacked. I am working hard on that area but it may take months for me to see the results. If your dad is moving his muscles this is a great sign, so have faith. Remember what I said in my first post. No one knows if or to what extent your dad will recover. It is up to his body and his willingness to work with what he gets back. Good luck!

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by Jenbrave on Oct 10, 2012 10:40 pm

Hi Selva- I think everybody is different with how they react when they hear the news. The important thing is to be realistic in recovery. Know what the good and bad may end up being and finding a new normal. I used to set daily goals for myself in the hospital and did rehab 5hrs a day. In my spare time, I tried to do excercises for my hands: Being able to hold a piece of tissue between my fingers or picking up a piece of string. It will take time but small goals are doable.

I couldn't use my fingers either at first or my legs. Once I could move a toe, I couldn't feel that I was doing it. They wanted to sent me to a hospice because I couldn't sit up without support and I had a full length leg brace on, but they gave me a chance to go to PT if I could sit up for a minute without passing out. I did it (barely!).

I never said no to my PT when she asked me to do something, I always tried. I never thought about the future, just that moment and that task and tried to accomplish it. I never thought I couldn't do something- especially if I tried. My goal when I was first injured was to use my iphone. When I left, my goal was to run.

I have nerve pain (as most of us do) and spasms but I found that desensitization and heat really help. 

Now I am back to running marathons (4 in the year after my accident), pilates, acupuncture and HOT yoga. These are my new physical therapy plans. They help with my balance, propreoception and pain/spasms. I do not take any drugs because I wanted to feel what was going on in my body so that I could feel the changes and because the neurontin and baclofen just wouldn't allow me to be as physical as I wanted to be. It was a trade off. The pain will never go away and some days are better than others (just like everybody else) you just have to feel it and find what works for you.

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by robert_2109037 on Oct 24, 2012 12:32 am

Hey Selva,
I wish your father all the best.  I've  been living life  with a spinal injury for 30 + years how. Life is not over but it well never be the same if his cord was damaged.  He has got a lot of life to live, just has to go about A little different . I never had a problem dealing with it!  Just get him out in the world as soon as he can. I may take time and when i say time... i mean Years, there will most likly be no speedy get well quick thing. I feel the sooner he and you come to grigs the sooner he start livin again. 
All the best to you and your father.

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by LoriK on Jan 9, 2013 5:40 pm

To Mark, I love the word stoked. You have such a positive attitude and i wish continued strength and happiness for u and your family. Reading your post made me smile, thanks.

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by Mark_2098591 on Jan 9, 2013 6:06 pm

Thanks Lori. I like making people smile. It's my favorite. Stoked is my favorite word I think. It describes me pretty well. Must be the surfer in me.

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by LoriK on Jan 9, 2013 6:09 pm

U surf?

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by Mark_2098591 on Jan 9, 2013 6:24 pm

Right now I surf on my knees because my balance sucks and popping up to my feet is not going to happen. I have been surfing since I was a kid. Probably one of the hardest things about SCI for me is not being able to surf whenever I want. Now it takes way too much planning and an entourage. Next summer I am hoping to be able ot hobble down to the water on my own. Who knows, maybe I might even be able to stand up surf by then. Knee surfing is cool and close enough.
I am going adaptive snowboarding on Friday. We'll see how that goes. Onward and upward.

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by LoriK on Jan 9, 2013 6:48 pm

I am shaking my head laughing at your tenacity! Love it! i understand the entourage part! Good luck snowboarding, I\'m sure you\'ll have a blast! Who helps u with daily stuff, your \'people\'? I live in cbrf, community based residential facility. it is one of my biggest struggles and I\'m only 40 but have to rely on medicare. I hate it that my care is left to so many others and at times I am just stuck!

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by Mark_2098591 on Jan 9, 2013 8:30 pm

I do my own daily stuff. I am self sufficient, but I have had tremendous return. I am very fortunate. What level is your SCI?

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by LoriK on Jan 9, 2013 10:04 pm

I actually have spinal cord cancer. I had my first brainstem tumor in 1997, radiation in 1999, then spinal cord tumor in 2003, radiation- rehab, ok by 2005, then in 2010 I started to get weak and then cancer diagnosis end of 2011. Took some chemo pills and AVAstin drip (chemo-like drug). I just didn\'t have any fight left after I became paralyzed in June of2011.

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by Mark_2098591 on Jan 10, 2013 7:50 am

Wow. Any shot at recovery?

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by LoriK on Jan 10, 2013 2:18 pm

At the point I\'m at, no. Yeah it\'s been quite a roller coaster.

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by Mark_2098591 on Jan 10, 2013 9:05 pm

There is always hope. Try to do what you can. Throw caution to the wind and try to get stronger in small ways that help you gain some independence. You may not walk. But you can still live.
Get into handbiking or something like that. Peace.

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by Joleen on Jan 11, 2013 2:58 am

Hello Selva!
        I am the survivor of a T7 spinal cord injury amongst some other physical injuries.  I have been a paraplegic since October 2008... and just within the past few months, after four years, I've managed to see a toe wiggle! 

  Never ever give up, anything is possible if we only allow our minds to believe it can happen.  My doctor explained nerve regeneration to me, previous medical persons involved in my care had told me this couldn't happen... but it's clearly happening now. 

Every individual body is not the same, each injury is different... we all heal and react to different types of situations differently.  Though there is much in common and some similarities across some lines, nothing is for certain by the book when it comes to what is possible in regaining mobility.

RE: Spinal Cord Injury

Posted by brook on Mar 21, 2013 7:45 pm

what an inspirational story, i applaud your achievements and i envy such strength... i send you and your family great blessings... i hope your story will inspire many more as it did me. 

Re: Spinal Cord Injury

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