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    I got surgery for L3-L4 for a tumor and I am getting back pain very often. Is there any belt or something I can use, so that it won't bother me? Any suggestion will be highly appreciated.



      I am a C4 and believe in FIT, frequent intense training. I am 8 months post injury. Original ASIA A now D. I have a high protien, fiber and vitamin diet with 5 days per week training: PT (walking and stairs) and OT (hands, trips, reaching), weight training and elliptical. Sooooo much to work on but seeing improvements.


        Originally posted by Faye M. Mays View Post
        Dr. Young,

        What is the best exercise for droop foot, balance and hyperextension in the knee area?
        Faye - what is your level of injury? Is this problem on both legs, or just one? I am a physical therapist and have worked with people with SCI for 8 years.

        If you have muscle activation, you can strengthen it. If the muscle doesn't turn on you have to accommodate for it. It sounds like you have weakness in your hip and quads, but may have some muscles that aren't activating...

        The level of injury also guides strengthening. For example - if your injury is a lower motor neuron, which means it is below the level where the spinal cord ends (around L1) then electrical stimulation would not be useful.

        You can email me if you'd like more guidance not on the chat board.
        Disclaimer: Answers, suggestions, and/or comments do not constitute medical advice expressed or implied. Please consult your attending physician for medical advise and treatment. In the event of a medical emergency please call 911.


          Originally posted by raokat View Post
          I got surgery for L3-L4 for a tumor and I am getting back pain very often. Is there any belt or something I can use, so that it won't bother me? Any suggestion will be highly appreciated.

          Have you tried a TENS unit?
          Disclaimer: Answers, suggestions, and/or comments do not constitute medical advice expressed or implied. Please consult your attending physician for medical advise and treatment. In the event of a medical emergency please call 911.


            I am not sure how you separate recovery due to exercise vs recovery due to healing, but I have had a very fortunate recovery so I will describe my exercise program and injury. I am a c1/c2 who spent 2 weeks in ICU and 4 weeks on a vent. Shortly after admission, one day, the prognosis was terrible. Within a week the spinal shock had subsided enough that my legs were showing considerable strength. After some leg strength returned, a PT began to have me stand using a hoist. I was diagnosed with central cord syndrome. After two weeks in ICU, getting through pneumonia, crazy blood pressure and heart rhythms, I was sent to a longterm acute care facility for vent weaning.

            At that facility the PTs started my walking attempts, using a very stable walker, and stretching my muscles. The OTs there started working with my hands, mostly massage and stretching. My right arm and hand also improved then, and I started eating with it by 4.5 weeks post accident. Also, by this time I had been weaned from the vent so I transitioned to a rehab hospital.

            The PTs at rehab kept me walking and stretched me twice per day. They also put me on an exercise bike or Nu-step, recumbent stair stepper sometimes. The OTs worked mostly with my hands, massaging, stretching and introducing some strengthening and agility exercises. My left arm started moving about 6 weeks post accident. The OTs also introduced some weight lifting at about 9 weeks post accident. I started using a wheelchair, pushing it with my legs at about this time.

            At 13 weeks post I went home able to walk a half mile and be semi-independent. For a few months I was went to an outpatient rehab program where the PT stretched me and worked on my gait and the OT worked on hand strength and agility. At home I walked, rode a recumbent exercise bike and did hand and body exercises. At about the time that I left the outpatient rehab, about 6 months post accident, I started going to a gym, with my wife to help me, for weight lifting. Also, at about that time, I bought a recumbent tricycle. I have been going to the gym for lifting 3 days per week since. I have also been riding and/or walking about every day. I have transitioned to a mountain bike. At about 12 months, I began using the elliptical and rowing machines to get lots of repetitive motion for my upper body. It is now 14 months, and I can walk 5 miles without assistance, ride 25 miles, and lift about 75% of pre-accident weights. I am independent now for almost all activities.

            My advice is to stretch lots, lift weights or do other strengthening drills, and do cardio for stamina and repetitive motion/stimulation. I think that the elliptical and rowing has restarted my left hand recovery.

            I still have significant spasticity, 60 mg Baclofen daily, and frustrations with stamina. My stamina as seemed to plateau. After a walk or ride, I get wobbly. My PT says it is nerve exhaustion. For this, I am continuing the cardio and being patient. I am also trying to not overdue because I think that that could hinder healing.

            This is a long , rambling post, but it is a complicated injury, and I have left out lots.

            C1/C2 walking quad, SCI from 4/2010


              Exercise & Recovery Response

              There has to be a mixture of both "functional training" and "resistance training" for a complete recovery. If you only do functional training which consist of treadmills,ellipticals,steppers etc you will of course load the CNS Central Nervous System to jump start your sensory unit. But you will always be prone to injury.Resistance training will strengthen the spinals supporting cast of muscles to maintain and stabilize the spinal column.A full program of diet and training is needed. My Specialty always looking to help someone! Free info cant beat that!


                You need an MRI to see where the pain is coming from.It could be muscular or nerve pain.


                  A tens unit will bother it even more if it is muscular pain. How often do you stretch?


                    Sit on the floor with your legs straight out in front of you then flex your foot so your toes move towards your body and your heels lift off the ground,Hold for about 5 seconds then stretch your foot in the opposite direction and curl tour toes under as tightly as you can. Hold for another 5 seconds and repeat the full range of movement as many times as you can.


                      Kittyshrine - WOW - great recovery and so quickly! Mine is C3C4 Incomplete. I cannot feel my legs, but can walk with a walker now - 5 months in. I also do E Stim, treadmill gait walking w/harness, and will soon be adding pool therapy more often. I am also hiring (insurance doesn't pay) a trainer/coach for triatheletes & he also works with 4 wc guys. He will start stretching me 2x/week for 2 hours to break up fascia(?) to give me more range of motion. I am already being stretched one hour every single day and it helps tremendously.
                      I have extension spasms, but they don't bother my walking until fatigued and then my legs shake/spasm. I have found while laying down, I put my arms to my side and I don't have extension spasms usually. Interesting. Don't know why. Not sure I care. It just helps tremendously.
                      I've found the medical community knows quite a bit, but I know what works for me the best and everyone is different.
                      My goal, of course, is to walk again without any help. I do not sweat so far.
                      I am trying to do my best to be proactive with exercise, as it makes me feel better mentally and physically. Sometimes I overdo it and don't know it until the best day. I usually practice walking every day and stretch. If I go to outpatient rehab, I take it easy on myself the next day.
                      Another that is helping is to practice stair stepping. A friend made me motorcycle handle bars attach to my counter, so I can stand, do squats, stair step (aerobic step) and it gets my nerves to fire in a good way to find new paths.
                      Hoping this helps a little.
                      Keep moving forward


                        I will begin strength training as well in a couple of weeks. There are soft wrist straps (Hollingger?) with hooks on them so I do not have to have full function of my hands to get back in the gym. I will have my trainer/coach go with me to get me started and see what I can do. Right now I'm lifting free weights, 5 lb. in left hand, 3 lb. in right.
                        Keep moving forward


                          Sorry, dumb question - what is the difference between "functional training" and "resistance training" ??


                            functional -- to use in your everyday life...resistance -- to build muscle, lose weight
                            Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans. -- John Lennon



                              I'm sorry, but for some reason I am unable to get into my head the different levels of injury; e.g. C4 T4, so I will just describe my experiences from a very lay perspective.

                              My son was paralysed from the cheekbones down in September 2010 during a severe bout of salmonella meningitis.

                              At the present time he now has considerable strength in his upper body and some movement in his legs. He is responding to regular physiotherapy and I believe that this has contributed to his progress so far.

                              I would be interested to hear the views of others.

                              We live in the UK.


                                How are you?

                                Would love to hear how you are doing now. How long has it been since your injury?