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Supporting Patient Decisions About Upper-Extremity Surgery in Cervical Spinal Cord Injury

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Technical Report,01 Sep 2017,31 Aug 2018

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Washington University St. Louis United States

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Purpose To define and communicate information about upper extremity UE function in spinal cord injury SCI.Scope Review information about spontaneous recovery and prospectively investigate recovery with and without surgical intervention. Major Findings Existing information about recovery after SCI is heterogeneous and complex predicting motor recovery overtime is possible. Surgical and non-surgical participants and caregivers need individualized approaches to optimize information-gathering. Results 1. The European Multicenter SCI database includes information on more than 500 people with cervical level SCI. Post-injury function predicts degree of motor recovery at 6-12 months post-SCI, which is critical to surgical decision making for people considering nerve transfer surgery. 2. SCI stakeholders note that people choosingnot choosing to undergo surgery have very specific reasons and priorities for their care that are likely under-recognized by surgeons and other health care providers. 3. Caregivers are under-recognized for the demandsstressorsconcerns they might have. Significance Based on preliminary concerns about caregiver burden and other experiences posed by the advisory board, the principal investigator has modified her clinical practice to improve the perioperative planning process for people undergoing surgery and their caregivers.

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  • Medicine and Medical Research

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