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Sports 'Loss for words': Injured Bronco shocked, excited over effect of spinal surgery

13:21  02 december  2019
13:21  02 december  2019 Source:   msn.com

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Can Spinal Shock Be Treated? Spinal shock is to spinal cord injuries as fevers are to infections. Spinal fusion surgery . Various brain and spinal cord imaging tests, as well as functional tests such Spinal cord injuries tend to change over time. The more severely compressed the spinal cord is, the

Lumbar or sacral injuries If the injury is in the lumbar or sacral area (Cauda Equina Syndrome) the reflex arcs connecting the bowel and spinal cord are broken. Oral stimulant laxatives may be needed in the early stages to overcome the effects of immobility and poor oral intake.

a group of people sitting in chairs© Provided by The Canadian Press

A hockey player paralyzed in the Humboldt Broncos bus crash says he is thrilled with the progress he's made since receiving spinal surgery in Thailand a month ago.

Doctors implanted an epidural stimulator in Ryan Straschnitzki's spine and one week later injected stem cells above and below the injury to try to reverse some of the damage.

The 20-year-old has just a week to go before returning home to Airdrie, Alta.

"It's been progressively getting better and harder at the same time, which is good. They put me through a good sweat, doing a couple of laps around the buildings. It's good work," Straschnitzki said in an interview from Bangkok with The Canadian Press.

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Spinal Cord Injury | American Association of Neurological Surgeons . Every year, an estimated 17,000 new SCIs occur in the U.S. Most of these are caused by trauma to the vertebral column, thereby affecting the spinal cord's ability to send and receive messages from the brain to the body's systems

Spinal shock refers to the muscle flaccidity and loss of reflexes seen after SCI. The “ shock ” to the injured cord may make it initially appear completely functionless. However, because the cord is usually not completely destroyed in SCI, the duration of this state is variable; recovery usually occurs.

One video of his rehab shows him straightening a leg. In another he is strapped into a harness as physiotherapists slowly help him walk with the use of a wheeled machine.

"I was at a loss for words. I was really shocked and excited at the same time. It kind of scared me a little bit, but again it was pretty excited," Straschnitzki said.

"I don't remember being that tall."

He said he felt all sorts of emotions when he took his first steps since climbing aboard the Broncos hockey bus on April 6, 2018.

"It gave me kind of a shock and brought back obviously a lot of memories ... (including) all the sports activities I was involved in."

Straschnitzki was one of 13 players injured when an inexperienced truck driver blew through a stop sign and into the path of the Saskatchewan junior team's bus. Sixteen others on the bus would die.

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Spinal shock is an entity that can encompass the earlier noted cardiovascular findings but is more often characterized by a marked reduction or loss of somatic and/or reflex functions of the spinal cord beyond the level of the injury . This has the potential to last for days or weeks post injury .

Spinal shock was first defined by Whytt in 1750 as a loss of sensation accompanied by motor paralysis with initial loss but gradual recovery of reflexes, following a spinal cord injury (SCI) – most often a complete transection.

Straschnitzki, who was paralyzed from the chest down, isn't expecting a cure but hopes the implant will restore some muscle movement.

Tom Straschnitzki, the young man's father, said the only downside is that his son is enduring spasms after using muscles that haven't been working for the last 19 months.

"He's getting pain where he never had before, which is a good thing, but it takes months for it to kick in."

Straschnitzki said the best part of the journey has been watching his son react to the changes he's experiencing.

"When he took his first steps on his own and he controlled it ... he was pretty revved."

The surgery can cost up to $100,000 and isn't covered by public health care or insurance, because the epidural procedure has not been approved by Health Canada. The Straschnitzki family is paying for it, but is angry the treatment isn't available here.

Health Canada says it has licensed spinal cord stimulators but only for pain relief.

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Although spinal cord injury (SCI) often causes sexual dysfunction, many people with SCI are able to have satisfying sex lives. Physical limitations acquired from SCI affect sexual function and sexuality in

A spinal cord injury (SCI) is damage to the spinal cord that causes temporary or permanent changes in its function. Symptoms may include loss of muscle function, sensation

"The department has not licensed a spinal cord stimulator device for regaining motor skills or sensory functions following spinal injuries, nor received an application for this intended use as of yet," Health Canada spokesman Geoffroy Legault-Thivierge wrote in an email.

Straschnitzki, who is hoping to make the Canadian sledge hockey team and compete in the Olympics, took his sled with him to Thailand and has been sitting in it as part of his rehab.

"It's supposed to help me with more balance, so when I'm on the ice I'm not falling over as easily."

He's finally been cleared to return to the ice in Bangkok later this week.

"I've been itching to get out there and I can't wait."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 2, 2019.

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Bill Graveland, The Canadian Press

Injured IceDogs goalie says he's looking forward to recovery and return .
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