T2-weighted scans provided data on the extent and dynamics of neuronal tissue damage and midsagittal tissue bridges at the epicenter of traumatic cervical spinal cord lesions in 24 subacute tetraplegic patients. At one month post-injury, smaller lesion area and midsagittal tissue bridges identified those patients with lower extremity evoked potentials and better clinical recovery. Wider midsagittal tissue bridges and smaller lesions at one month post-injury were associated with neurological and functional recovery at 1 year follow-up. Neuroimaging biomarkers of lesion area and midsagittal tissue bridges are potential outcome predictors and patient stratifiers in both subacute and chronic clinical trials. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.