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Thread: Ten frequently asked questions concerning cure of spinal cord injury

  1. #581
    I'm a T6/7 para 38 yrs. post injury. I did my rehab at Sacred heart in Spokane and the G.F. Stronge in Vancouver, Canada. I was told from day one to stand as much as possible. Back in those days, we didn't have standing frames for home use. Instead we were issued those old heavy metal leg braces with the 1/4" steel plates in the soles of the shoes to attach the braces. I used these for standing and used to stand at a table with a webbed belt around my back to secure myself while standing.

    Since then things have progressed to where home standers are common place. I have the Easystand 6000 Glider presently and use it at least three times a week for at least an 1hour each time.

    I truly believe that standing has helped keep me in the good shape I am in after all these years. I think it is one of the best things we can do for our overall general health and don't want to imagine what I would do without one. I also ride an FES bike twice a week at our local hosp., ride a handcycle, work out in a gym with a trainer 2x's a week and have a vitaglide and shoulder press machine at my home. I have hooks in the ceiling above my stander where I use various strength rubber cords for overhead stretches.

    IMO it is so important to be in the best shape we can be. Standing is just one aspect; it feels so good to stand tall.

  2. #582
    Patrick, your unbeliveable and your efforts are highly respected. I try to stand at the sink with braces locked; very difficult. the easy stander sounds intersting. Can you give nore specifics on it. Thanks in advance.

    keeping on

  3. #583
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wise Young View Post
    Over the years, many questions recur repeatedly every few days. Let me try to recap some of these questions to stimulate discussion. Please ask and comment...

    1. Will there be a cure for spinal cord injury?
    • The answer to this question of course depend on one's definition of a cure. If a cure means eradication of spinal cord injury, I think that it is unlikely in my lifetime. If a cure means complete restoration of all function to "normal" or pre-injury levels for all people with spinal cord injury, I think that that this is unlikely because we probably will not have therapies that can completely reverse aging and changes of the body due to the injury. On the other hand, I believe that there will be effective therapies that will restore function to people with spinal cord injury, including touch and pain sensations, bladder and bowel function, erection and ejaculation, and motor control including long-distance walking. Several years ago, I tried to get around the problem of the definition of "cure" by proposing that a person would be cured if a well-informed observer cannot tell that a person has had spinal cord injury. This does not necessarily mean that the person has been completely restored to pre-injury levels or all functions are normal.


    2. When will a cure be available?
    • Some therapies are restoring substantial function to some people. These are what I call the first generation therapies which include treatments like weight-supported treadmill ambulation training, decompression and untethering of a spinal cord that is compressed. Some preliminary data suggest that certain cell transplants such as olfactory ensheathing glia transplants will restore 4-8 levels of sensory function and 1-2 levels of motor function. None of these therapies can be construed as a cure. Second generation therapies are beginning to come into clinical trial and should be available in a few years. These include nasal mucosa olfactory ensheathing glia, Schwann cell transplants, and perhaps even embryonic stem cells. The latter unfortunately have been mired in political debate and has already been delayed by 4 years. In addition, several therapies such as Nogo receptor blockers and Nogo antibodies, glial-derived neurotrophic factor, chondroitinase, and other treatments are being developed for clinical trial and may come on line within a year or two. The timing of such treatments depends on the availability of funding for clinical trials. But, if sufficient funding were available, I think that some of these treatments will be shown to be effective and will be available in 4 years. Finally, third generation therapies will be closer to the "cure". These include possible combination cell transplant therapies with growth factors and other treatments that stimulate regeneration of the spinal cord. These should produce more recovery in more people. For example, cell transplants combined with drugs such as glial-derived neurotrophic factor, chondroitinase ABC, and cAMP/rolipram have been reported to produce significantly better regeneration in rats compared to individual treatments. The rate at which these treatments get into clinical trial depend on the amount of funding available for clinical trial. If funding were made available, I think that some of third generation therapies will be available as soon as 8 years from now.
    With the recent break's, I was wondering has your view changed that you might see the glimer or light at the end of the tunnel in regards to full cure. example possibly 30 years from now with the progress of medical advancments.

    I would hate to pass away or even yourself without knowing a possiable end this missery.

    As i am 46 years of age and been in the chair for the last 20 is there any hope that i will regain the ability to use my hands and legs agian to the point of being independent.

    I throw off my leg when sitting in one place to long for comfort and at times think well i might just go an stretch my legs for a moment but know dam well my legs won't move. I would like (selfishly) think i will be able to do this in at least the next 10 years away.


    do you think that a government body of one government per country should work and focus on a single cure of a problem like NASA did in the sixties? or have several like we do now.

  4. #584
    Senior Member lunasicc42's Avatar
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    I don't think it's selfish at all to want to stand in the next ten years... You shouldnt "just accept this and play happy "
    "That's not smog! It's SMUG!! " - randy marsh, southpark

    "what???? , you don't 'all' wear a poop sac?.... DAMNIT BONNIE, YOU LIED TO ME ABOUT THE POOP SAC!!!! "


    2010 SCINet Clinical Trial Support Squad Member
    Please join me and donate a dollar a day at http://justadollarplease.org and copy and paste this message to the bottom of your signature

  5. #585
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    Great info. Can stem cell supplements like JDI iNTERNATIONAL offer be effective in helping SCI?

  6. #586
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kenu View Post
    Great info. Can stem cell supplements like JDI iNTERNATIONAL offer be effective in helping SCI?
    Stem cell supplements? You don’t have to buy that, you are a living proof of stem cells, whether these stem cells or additional supplements of stem cells will help you are doubtful. But, stem cell supplements when it comes to blood transfusions or for illnesses like for example leukemia, it has been proven to be effective.

  7. #587
    Quote Originally Posted by Kenu View Post
    Great info. Can stem cell supplements like JDI iNTERNATIONAL offer be effective in helping SCI?
    Kenu, there is no credible data that these supplements have any effect. Wise.

  8. #588

    Byproducts of Stem Cell Therapies

    Good afternoon, Dr Young. Although improved therapies for injury-related neuropathic pain are not the thrust of current trials, I would hope that attention is being specifically paid to pain.

    My question is whether you think that current or future stem cell trials will yield therapies for neuropathic pain as a by product? If so, do you think that there will be a cure for neuropathic pain, or better medicinal therapies, or both? And, do you think this is likely within the next five years? Thank you!

  9. #589
    Hello everyone,

    First I would like to praise the extensive content related to SCI present on this forum and the exceptional work that appears to be done by Dr. Wise... I think over 35 000 posts in 10 years speak for themselves!

    I sustained a SCI in mid-april this year after my back collided with a car that interfered with my trajectory while riding a motorcycle. I couldn't feel/move anything except my hands at that point.

    Fairly quickly I was transported to a hospital where an x-ray was made showing that my T8 vertebra is broken and compresses the cord quite badly (bending it nearly 90 degrees). An small fracture was also present at L5 but it was decided that it should be ignored given the situation in the thoracic region.

    I underwent surgery roughly 6-7 post-injury to decompress and fuse my spine (t6-t10) and went on to spend 3 days in ICU. The surgery went on for 8 hours. When I woke up after surgery, there was a 1% zone in my left leg where i could feel light touch. I stayed in hospital for 1 week from where I was discharged upon my request basically. I did do about 12 hours of HBO (oxygen therapy) for 12 days within the first 2 weeks post-op

    At that point. feeling progressively kept returning on my left side, to a lesser extend on my right still no movement thou. Anal light-touch and pin-prick appeared switching me officially to ASIA B. I am lucky enough to be able to hire a rehabilitator at home from the very beginning. As my overall condition improved (and the weather), I started using my pool as well.

    Sensation kept on returning, as well as some doral muscles and abs, but still no movements in my legs after 1 month. MRI shows the fusion is very successful but a zone of "hyperintensity" is clearly visible in the spinal cord (a cyst the size of a pea in the middle surround by a "spider web-like" white zone around it visible on T2 scans). Spasticity, anckle clonus, and spasm in the legs started to show up at that point. My doctors' prognosis was becoming less optimistic at this point.

    After 6 weeks, I was able to remove catherisation and switch to condoms. Still no movement in my legs at that point. Worried, I arranged to have an stem cell transplant done in my spinal cord (8.5ml of "purified" bone marrow cells - my own - were inserted with a lumbar punction) 2 months post-sci.

    Every day rehabs, standing with braces and walker, passive exercises but still no movements in my legs.However about 10 weeks post-sci, anal contraction appeared and slight contractions (mostly 1 on the scale out of 5) showed up in both knee extensors and hip flexors. (ASIA C at this point) No really visible movements, spasticity being a problem.

    My bladder control started to show improvement after 13 weeks, althou still incontinent. Due to my swimming 3-5 times per week my cardio improved to a descent level.

    I am taking 2x2 milgams N from day one after my injury (B1, B6 and B12 vitamin combination). I have been trying to get consultations from all over the world for things I could do knowing there is no cure for SCI. One doctor advised me to take galantamine so i am taking 2x5mg per day for 2 weeks now. I have been advised to take midocalm and/or baclofen for the spasticity (which is mostly moderate in my case) but i have refused because this spasticity seems to keep my legs (my upper-legs mainly) from atrophy.

    Another MRI last week showed a "cyst-like" white zone (nobody can tell if its a cyst, hemorrhage or something else) is present at T7-T8 in the middle of the cord measuring 4mm wide by 13 mm long (T2 Sag view). I also did an EMG test that to my surprise showed damage to my anterior roots at L3, L4, L5, S1 and S2 (possibly some anterior corn damage as well). F waves completely missing at L4 and L5. Complete peripheral denervation in one muscle in my right foot, atrophia in most muscles below the knees (since most of the spasticity is in higher muscles).

    After this I was suggested to start taking cerebrolisyn and i've doing so for 2 days now (2x5ml intramuscular injections per day).

    Current condition:
    Light-touch feeling present in 90% of left leg, 25 % in right leg
    Pinprick present in 35% left-leg, 10 % right leg
    Temperature present in right side only.
    Proprioceptive feeling in both legs, better in left
    Traces of movement (1 or 2 on 5 scale) present in most muscles above the knees, nothing in both anckles

    A couple of issues here:

    Is it possible that the main reason for the lack of convincing movements in the legs is due to the roots damage in the lumbo-sacral region and that once they heal my movements will unlock?

    According to what I see, I would be a good case for
    Chondroitinase ABC injection


    is there someone currently perfoming it on human SCI on the planet?

    Is there anything else more that I can do to improve my recovery (except rehab, I will probably do a 3 months intensive rahab program in a clinic in RUssia with Dikul's method starting in september) to enhance recovery.

    How long can I expect recovery to occur...

    AND ONE I'M SURE YOU LOVE.... Do I have a chance of walking again some day (with little or no help that is


    Thank you everyone for your attention. (special thanks to dr. young)

  10. #590
    Help solve the problem. I am a masseur and friend of mine, had endured four months ago, surgery to remove a herniated intervertebral, asks him to do a back massage with honey. Is it acceptable is in this case?

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