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Do people who were ASIA A, B, C at 24 hours after injury recover function 3 or more years after injury?

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  • Do people who were ASIA A, B, C at 24 hours after injury recover function 3 or more years after injury?

    In a previous poll as many as 25% of people responding indicated that they recovered some function 3 or more years after injury. That poll, however, did not segregate people into complete or incomplete injuries. Given all the statements in the press indicating that nobody has recovered function after a "complete" spinal cord injury, it would be very interested to know how many people who were complete, ASIA A, B, C at 24 hours after injury recovered some function 3 or more years after injury. For the purposes of the poll,
    • "complete" means a person who had no voluntary movement or sensation more than 2 segments below the injury site at 24 hours after injury.
    • ASIA A means a person who had no voluntary movement or sensation at the lowest sacral level, i.e. anal sphincter contraction or sensation.
    • ASIA B means a person who had no voluntary movement at the lowest sacral level but has some sensation more than two segments below the injury site, including the anal sensation.
    • ASIA C means a person who has some voluntary movement and sensation more than two segments below the injury site, including the anal sphincter.
    I did not get more functional recovery 3 or more years after injury.
    I had a "complete" spinal cord injury at 24 hours and had no voluntary movement or sensation more than 2 segments below the injury site but recovered additional motor and/or sensory function 3 or more years after injury
    I was an ASIA A at 24 hours and recovered additional function 3 or more years after injury
    I was ASIA B at 24 hours and recovered additional function 3 or more years after injury
    I was ASIA C at 24 hours and recovered additional function 3 or more years after injury

  • #2
    I was an ASIA B from the beginning with sensation only due to anterior spinal artery syndrome. But like Reeve I had constant inpatient or outpatient PT the first 8 years and recovered to an ASIA C/D level with functional motor recovery that allows for assisted standing transfers with weight bearing on both legs. I think continual PT is important and that the cord and body are extremely plastic when it comes to finding new ways of doing things. Compared to others of my level I've had fewer infections, no hospitalizations except for tests or more rehab and just been plain old healthier until I stopped, err, I was ejected, from PT because I was no longer a profitable patient (I took up too much in labor costs). And I have yet to have a sore--knock wood.

    Seems to me if I added all my payments from insurance up and compared them to someone close to my injury level and home life and had no more than 6 months outpatient PT other than normal inpatient rehab my costs would be lower during those 8 years. Now that I'm not active in PT I'm finding I have a lot more side issues and pain again which is a real BITCH!
    Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, "I will try again tomorrow."

    Disclaimer: Answers, suggestions, and/or comments do not constitute medical advice expressed or implied and are based solely on my experiences as a SCI patient. Please consult your attending physician for medical advise and treatment. In the event of a medical emergency please call 911.


    • #3

      My brother was injured August 11, 2001 and they said he was C5-6 complete. He has wrist movement and they said he would be lucky if he ever had that. He was able to voluntarily move toes on both feet in the beginning (upon command). Wouldn't you think he should have been evaluated as incomplete becasue of that? Since about 2 weeks after surgery he has not been able to do that. How would you have evaluated him? Sorry I am running off of the topic, but he has become considerably stronger and now he is set back by a very bad pressure sore that is most likely going to have to be operated on (flap surgery). I was just always confused about his level of completeness. Thank you. Kimber


      • #4

        i was diagnosed as t-12 complete. i didn't get return till 2months after injury. i haven't been injured for 3yrs but i thought this might be hopeful for some. i now have sensation to just below my lt knee and motor to both knees. i believe it's l2 on both. maybe in 3 yrs it will be even further.


        • #5
          Depending on which Shockarama report you read, I was a complete or incomplete C-5. All I got back was mild wrist extension in my left wrist that, despite exercise, never became good for anything functional.

          From 1984-1985, I had extensive PT and electrical stim for a year. Despite the fact that movement (even range) aggravates my pains by pulling on the painful areas of my back and abdomen (for some reason, my hand and leg pains aren't really affected by movement - they just tingle a bit more), I eagerly did everything they asked. I left nicely muscled, in more pain than when I started (not their fault - that's been my pattern since the pain syndrome showed up.) I will say that was my most enjoyable year as a quad. I looked good, ate well, and most days the pains, though bad, weren't enough to keep me down or severely limit my eating (there were a few worse days.) No way I could tolerate all that now, with the pain 18 years more intense (I have to grit my teeth just to get through range of motion.)

          If anyone knows a way I can pass these pains on to a deserving person (bin Laden, Saddam, or some other slime of your choice), I'm in a very giving mood.

          [This message was edited by alan on Sep 13, 2002 at 10:05 PM.]

          Proofread carefully to see if you any words out.


          • #6

            Try wooo-do [img]/forum/images/smilies/wink.gif[/img]

            I simply don't remember, I was knocking on Heavens Door for 9 days [img]/forum/images/smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]

            "It has been said that for the truth to exist, it takes two people - one to speak it...and another to hear it. Mankind will be forever doomed to destruction if we continue to ask for the truth...but then refuse to listen.." Outer Limits( To Tell The Truth )



            • #7
              Based on this unscientific poll I guess we know why most neurologists tell us that long term improvement just isn't going to happen.


              • #8
                quadfather, this poll is not a cause for pessimism. The current belief is that people recover 95% of their function within the first year after injury.

                Please note that it should only be answered by people who are three or more years after injury.

                I also apologize for implying a difference between "complete" and ASIA A. This may not have been obvious from the two choices... The definition of "complete" spinal cord injury" use to be no sensation or voluntary movement below the injury site. ASIA A indicates the lack of sensation or voluntary function at the lowest level of the spinal cord (i.e. voluntary anal sphincter contraction and sensation). The reason for this differentiation is because some people are have some sensation and movement below the injury site but not at the lowest cord segment.

                We should have more than 17 people on these forums who are more than 3 years after injury.



                • #9
                  I read the posts after replying on behalf of my injured spouse. We were told 10 hours after the onset off paralysis (and for several months after)that his injury was complete at the T4 level. This was Dec. 23, 1999 so we are a bit shy of three years. Three months later after a bit of Dr. switching we were extrordinarily blessed with a muscle twitch detected by an amazing Physician. My husband continues to recognize more return. His level of injury has dropped to T9, he can walk with a walker, though it is exhausting. He can detect hot and cold, feel light touch and other sensations and voluntarily contract his muscles and move his limbs. We believe his body will continue to heal and regenerate. The prior promise of a 2 year window for those who are injured should be expanded for those who have been treated with Methleprednisone (sp?) to "anything is possible". Kath

                  [This message was edited by KDK513 on Sep 18, 2002 at 01:09 AM.]


                  • #10


                    • #11
                      At the time I was injured, I believe I was C5/6 complete. After a few weeks, I found a few working abdominal muscles.

                      When I started a new exercise program two weeks ago, I discovered that I have some muscles on the sides of my trunk. I'm working them to see just how strong they can get. I was injured 5.5 years ago.


                      • #12
                        Bump. I apologize for the complexity of the poll questions. It was intended to see whether people recovered function 3 or more years after injury and what classification they were on the first day of injury.

                        The first choice are people who DID NOT recover function 3 or more years after injury. With 26 votes, 58% of the people did not show such delayed recovery. This is obviously not quite enough votes to be truly a valid poll and the reason why I want to bump this poll up to see if we can get more responses.

                        The rest of the choices are aimed at determine that, of those who did get delayed recovery, whether they were ASIA A, B, or C. Note that the second choice is for people with ASIA A (complete) who had no function more than 2 segments below the injury site. The reason for this special category of ASIA A is because the ASIA A category includes people who may have extensive motor and sensory function below the injury level but lacks sensation and motor function at the lowest level (anal sphincter sensation and contraction).




                        • #13
                          bump. Long term recovery poll


                          • #14
                            This is a good poll question...however I think that the results would be very different if those injured were decompressed ASAP!

                            I was totaly complete at 24 hours and I think that is why the doctor did not decompress me ie. remove anterior bone frag.

                            It has been almost one year and all I have regaind is some light sensation in the right leg and some other small stuff.


                            • #15
                              Matt is Asia A, C4-5, status post 4+ years; has begun to recover a tiny bit of triceps function in the last six months

                              Tough times don't last - tough people do.