Donate to Acute Spinal Cord Injury Research, Patient Care and Education

The spinal cord is the message highway that sends signals, voluntary and involuntary, from the brain to the rest of the body. Any sudden or traumatic injury to the spinal cord is known as an acute spinal cord injury. The injury can result in a bruise, partial injury or even total injury to the spinal cord. When a partial spinal cord injury occurs, the nerves are still able to carry partial messages to the brain. A complete spinal injury, on the other hand, results in a total loss of the highway that sends messages through nerves from the brain. A quadriplegia spinal cord injury is the loss of movement in all four limbs and the chest muscles, while a paraplegia spinal cord injury is the loss of movement in the lower extremities of the body.

By making a donation to Northwestern Memorial Foundation, you will help scientists and physicians at Northwestern Medicine to advance crucial research and clinical care in the area of spinal cord injuries.

Myriad complications can arise as a result of spinal cord injuries. Deep vein thrombosis, skin breakdowns and extreme changes in blood pressure, as well as loss of bladder control, potential kidney damage and loss of sensation are but a few of the debilitating complications that can follow a spinal cord injury.

Prevention is the key to avoiding spinal injuries, and a vigilant focus on safety is important. For example, people must be mindful of the depth of water before diving in, and they must use appropriate equipment and protective gear for contact sports. It is also essential to use extra caution (and to wear a helmet) when riding a bicycle or a motorcycle. Above all, everyone–whether driver or passenger, in the front seat or the back seat–must always wear a seat belt in a car. The largest number of spinal cord injuries result from car accidents, falls, violence, sports-related injuries and trampoline accidents.

At Northwestern Medicine, specialists, such as orthopaedic surgeons and neurosurgeons, are able to diagnosis spinal cord injuries with the aid of CT scans or MRIs, myelograms, magnetic stimulations and X-rays of a patient’s spine. Surgery is often required to repair severe spinal cord injuries and to remove any bone fragments, fluids or foreign objects. Your generous contribution to Northwestern Memorial Foundation will help to ensure that Northwestern Medicine remains on the leading edge of efforts to prevent, diagnose and treat acute spinal cord injuries.

Acute Spinal Cord Injury Research, Patient Care and Education Donation

Aided by your generosity, Northwestern Medicine will continue to earn national recognition as a leading site for the understanding, diagnosis and exceptional care of spinal cord injuries. In addition to accelerating front-line research and contributing to new developments in clinical care, your donation will provide hope and support to a great many patients and their loved ones, as they cope with the many challenges associated with spinal cord injuries. 

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