Providing Complete Care for Patients Rehabilitating After Spinal Cord Injury
Spinal cord injury is a life-changing event that affects many, if not all, aspects of a person’s life. Each year, about 11,000 individuals in the U.S. suffer a spinal cord injury. Because the recovery process is long and trying, those injured need to be part of a rehabilitation program that addresses the needs specific to injured individuals at each stage of their recovery.
Each spinal cord injury patient at University Hospitals Avon Rehabilitation Hospital joins the routine of three daily hours of therapy, plus individual time in training for the appropriate level of independent living. Throughout treatment, patients and families become an integral part of the rehabilitation team and to help identify individual needs and goals. As the team meets on a regular basis, patient progress is assessed and treatment goals are developed and adjusted.
Adjustment to a spinal cord injury is a major priority in the individual’s physical, emotional, work and personal lives. Therapists weave coping strategies, education and practical solutions into a patient’s stay, while rehabilitation nurses ensure that therapy continues throughout the day and encourage patients to utilize techniques provided by their therapist.
Pain is another leading factor in the changed life of the individual. Pain in spinal cord injuries can come and go throughout the body. Treatments for pain are tailored to each individual’s needs to maximize their comfort and performance while participating in the rehabilitation program.
The spinal cord injury program at UH Avon Rehabilitation Hospital answers these needs and addresses the issues confronting each patient. The program is designed to restore patients to their highest physical, social and emotional potential. Patients receive care from a team of spinal cord injury specialists, including physical, speech and occupational therapists, rehabilitation nurses, and a physiatrist specializing in physical medicine and rehabilitation.