Spinal Cord Injury Complications
Spinal Cord Injury Complications can be varied and will cause additional distress to an already difficult and painful condition. These complications may be associated with respiratory, cardiovascular, and pain syndromes. While these may be overwhelming side effects, they can successfully be treated to improve your quality of life. Some of the problems you may experience which can be related to spinal cord injuries are:
- Loss of Bladder control – Your bladder will continue to function in the capacity of processing urine in conjunction with your kidneys. But, because your spinal cord has been injured, the message being sent from the brain to control your bladder may not be relayed as well. You may also be more prone to urinary tract infections or kidney stones.
- Problems with Bowel control – The digestive system works just as it did before the injury, but the ability to control bowel movements may not be the same.
- Circulatory issues – Damage of the spinal cord can potentially cause swelling of the limbs. A sudden drop in blood pressure could occur upon standing. Or the opposite could happen, which is a sudden and dangerous rise in blood pressure. The risk of blood clots or deep vein thrombosis could be increased in the event of a spinal cord injury.
- Skin sensitivity or numbness – Loss of skin sensation can occur below the level of the injury because your skin can’t send the message to the brain when it feels pain, pressure, or react to something that is hot or cold.
- Respiratory problems – It may be harder to breathe if the muscles in the chest are impacted by the spinal cord injury. Muscles in the abdomen and the diaphragm are also at risk. Illnesses such as pneumonia are a potential hazard, and so certain drugs may be prescribed to control the risk of infection.
- Changes in muscular function – Muscle spasms (painful, spontaneous tightening of the muscle) may become a problem, or there may be atrophy (weakening) of the muscles.
- Level of fitness – Obesity, weight gain, muscle loss and co-morbidities such as diabetes and high cholesterol may occur with a spinal cord injury.
- Sexuality and sexual response – Fertility and sexual function could be impacted by a spine injury. Nerve damage could cause changes in erection in men and women may notice a difference in lubrication.
Spinal Cord Injury Complications Can Interfere With Your Daily Life
In addition to these issues, pain that is caused by a spinal cord injury can be debilitating, which will affect work and personal life. The pain and inability to function as before can also cause depression.
Doctors, urologists, and fertility specialists who specialize in spinal cord injury can offer options for sexual functioning and fertility.
- Pain. Some people experience pain, such as muscle or joint pain, from overuse of muscle groups. Nerve pain, also known as neuropathic or central pain, can occur after a spinal cord injury.
- Depression. Coping with all the changes spinal cord injury brings and living with pain causes some people to experience depression.
Therapy and medications are available to treat depression associated with living with a spinal cord injury. Spine Vue offers help and solutions to treat secondary conditions that are attributed or caused by Spinal Cord Injury. Contact us today to discover what your best treatment options might be.