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Incomplete Paraplegia - An Outcome Of Spinal Cord Injury


A spinal cord injury that left you with incomplete paraplegia had some neurological connections between your brain and body. You may still have some feeling and/or movement control in the parts of your body that are paralyzed partially.

Complete paraplegia, on the other hand, happens when all nerve connections are destroyed. This means that the person has no feeling or control below the lesion. Only the spinal cord's spared neuronal pathways may undergo adaptive alterations in terms of the likelihood of recovery.

People with less severe spinal cord injuries often have better recovery prospects, since they have more neuronal connections that have been spared. However, partial spinal cord damage might be mistaken for a whole one.

Following an SCI, patients often undergo spinal shock and lose all reflexes and bodily functions below the level of damage. This is a temporary condition, and when the inflammation starts to go away, reflexes may slowly start to come back.

What Is Paraplegia?

COPYRIGHT_SPINE: Published on https://spinal-injury.net/incomplete-paraplegia/ by Dr. Bill Butcher on 2022-10-05T00:34:37.377Z

A complete traumatic spinal cord injury chart
A complete traumatic spinal cord injury chart

When you break it down, para signifies two and plegia indicates paralysis. Defined as the paralysis of two limbs, primarily the legs, paraplegia is the condition. Damage to the spinal cord's thoracic, lumbar, or sacral sections results in paraplegia.

Muscle paralysis in the trunk will also occur in people with thoracic spinal cord injuries. On the other hand, quadriplegia, or paralysis of the upper and lower limbs, results from injury to the cervical area of the spinal cord.

Walking ability, urine and bowel control, sexual function, and balance are just a few of the numerous functions that may be impacted by spinal cord injury. Fortunately, the activities of the upper extremities are unchanged.

People with paraplegia have a great chance of regaining their independence. People should still be able to pick up things, drive a manual wheelchair, and carry out many other daily life tasks.

Types Of Spinal Cord Injury

There are several ways that injuries occur and various forms of spinal cord damage since the majority of them are caused by trauma. Automobile accidents slip and fall, gunshot wounds, and sports injuries.

Surgical complications are some of the most frequent causes of spinal cord damage. Most cases involve damage to the spinal cord all the way through, or damage that isn't all the way through.

The portion of the spinal cord that is impacted by a total spinal cord injury is permanently damaged. Complete spinal cord damage may result in paraplegia or tetraplegia. Partial spinal cord damage is referred to as an incomplete spinal cord injury.

The location of the spine affected and the extent of the injury determines the degree of sensation and the capacity to move. Results are determined by a patient's health and medical background.

Is There A Treatment For Incomplete Paraplegia?

There are two types of paraplegia: complete and incomplete. Even though there is no cure for spinal cord injury (SCI) right now, clinical studies are showing that SCI rehabilitation has a bright future. Potential therapies for partial paraplegia include electrical stimulation and stem cell therapy.

Electrical Stimulation

Electrical stimulation known as epidural stimulation may provide people with incomplete paraplegia the boost they need to reactivate paralyzed limb mobility.

A stimulator is surgically inserted onto the lower part of the spine in this procedure. The stimulator helps people move by sending electrical currents to the neurons below the lesion site that act like brain impulses.

Stem Cell Transplants

Stem cell therapies focus on repairing the damage by helping the nerve cells grow back. This is different from epidural electrical stimulation, which works around the injury. Stem cells offer hope for SCI rehabilitation because they can change into many different types of cells and divide indefinitely.

Intensive Gait Training

Recovery from partial paraplegia may be strongly impacted by the intensity of therapy. Movements may be learned and forgotten via the spinal cord, so regular, intense practice is crucial.

The spinal cord's capacity to adapt and remodel itself is known as neuroplasticity. Physical training that is task-specific and very repetitive will support brain strengthening and rewiring. As your brain, body, and spinal cord figure out how to work together again, the affected movements will start to feel more normal.

What is Paraplegia and Quadriplegia?

Levels Of Spinal Cord Injury

The cervical, thoracic, lumbar, and sacral regions of the spinal cord all affect the severity of spinal cord damage. Different groupings of the body's controlling nerves are shielded by different regions of the spine.

The area of the spine that is affected might affect the kind and severity of spinal cord injuries. Learn about the four stages of spinal cord damage, the portions of the spine, and potential outcomes of recovery.

People Also Ask

Can An Incomplete Paraplegic Walk?

The majority of them need a walking aid and can only walk partially.

Can You Recover From An Incomplete Spinal Cord Injury?

The person may regain some function up to 18 months after the injury, especially for partial ones.

What Is The Difference Between Complete And Incomplete Paralysis?

Complete spinal cord injuries result in a wholly severed spinal cord and the loss of all function below the damaged site. In contrast, partial SCIs take place when the spinal cord is harmed or squeezed.


A spinal cord injury may result in incomplete paraplegia, which refers to lower body paralysis and sometimes loss of feeling.

People may be able to regain lost capabilities with rigorous therapy because when the injury is partial, brain connections are still intact.

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About The Authors

Dr. Bill Butcher

Dr. Bill Butcher - With more than two decades of experience, Dr. Bill Butcher aims to provide a repository for educational materials, sources of information, details of forthcoming events, and original articles related to the medical field and about health subjects that matter to you. His goal is to help make your life better, to help you find your way when faced with healthcare decisions, and to help you feel better about your health and that of your family. Bill received his medical degree at Boston University School of Medicine and spent his entire career helping people find the health and medical information, support, and services they need. His mission is to help millions of people feel fantastic by restoring them to optimal health.

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