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Early neurological care of patients with spinal cord injury


Kessler, Thomas M; Traini, Luca R; Welk, Blayne; Schneider, Marc P; Thavaseelan, Jeffrey; Curt, Armin (2018). Early neurological care of patients with spinal cord injury. World Journal of Urology, 36(10):1529-1536.

Abstract

Purpose Considering the major clinical challenges of managing patients with spinal cord injury (SCI), we summarized the relevant aspects of the early (within 1 year after SCI) neurological care emphasizing common standards. Methods This review was performed according to the methodology recommended by the Joint SIU-ICUD International Consultation. Embase and Medline databases were used to identify literature relevant to the early neurological care of SCI patients. Recommendations were developed by consensus and graded using a modified Oxford system which identifies level of evidence (LOE) and grade of recommendation (GOR). Results Emergency health care providers must address altered mental status, evidence of intoxication, suspected extremity fracture/distracting injury, focal neurological deficit and spinal pain/tenderness to determine the risk of SCI in a trauma patient [LOE 1, GOR A]. Neurogenic shock must be recognized and treated [LOE 3, GOR A]. Spine surgeons should consider early decompression and spine fixation/stabilization, where indicated, and should promote early active rehabilitation to improve functional recovery [LOE 2, GOR B]. Clinicians should refer SCI patients to specialized SCI rehabilitation centers [LOE 4, GOR B], must apply interventions to prevent venous thromboembolism (i.e., compression devices and low-molecular weight heparin/unfractionated heparin) after acute SCI respecting contraindications [LOE 1, GOR A]. Contemporary guidelines to manage pain must be employed [LOE 1, GOR A] and methods to reduce the risk of pressure ulcers should be used [LOE 3, GOR B]. Conclusions Early treatment, prevention of associated complications and individualized patient-targeted rehabilitation programs provided by a specialized interdisciplinary team are crucial to optimize the outcome after SCI.

Abstract

Purpose Considering the major clinical challenges of managing patients with spinal cord injury (SCI), we summarized the relevant aspects of the early (within 1 year after SCI) neurological care emphasizing common standards. Methods This review was performed according to the methodology recommended by the Joint SIU-ICUD International Consultation. Embase and Medline databases were used to identify literature relevant to the early neurological care of SCI patients. Recommendations were developed by consensus and graded using a modified Oxford system which identifies level of evidence (LOE) and grade of recommendation (GOR). Results Emergency health care providers must address altered mental status, evidence of intoxication, suspected extremity fracture/distracting injury, focal neurological deficit and spinal pain/tenderness to determine the risk of SCI in a trauma patient [LOE 1, GOR A]. Neurogenic shock must be recognized and treated [LOE 3, GOR A]. Spine surgeons should consider early decompression and spine fixation/stabilization, where indicated, and should promote early active rehabilitation to improve functional recovery [LOE 2, GOR B]. Clinicians should refer SCI patients to specialized SCI rehabilitation centers [LOE 4, GOR B], must apply interventions to prevent venous thromboembolism (i.e., compression devices and low-molecular weight heparin/unfractionated heparin) after acute SCI respecting contraindications [LOE 1, GOR A]. Contemporary guidelines to manage pain must be employed [LOE 1, GOR A] and methods to reduce the risk of pressure ulcers should be used [LOE 3, GOR B]. Conclusions Early treatment, prevention of associated complications and individualized patient-targeted rehabilitation programs provided by a specialized interdisciplinary team are crucial to optimize the outcome after SCI.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Balgrist University Hospital, Swiss Spinal Cord Injury Center
04 Faculty of Medicine > Brain Research Institute
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:1 October 2018
Deposited On:07 Jun 2018 09:58
Last Modified:24 Sep 2019 23:30
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:0724-4983
OA Status:Closed
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s00345-018-2343-2
PubMed ID:29808302

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