Spinal Cord Reconstruction Surgery for Spinal Cord Injury

History

Steven sustained spinal cord injury at C5-C7 level in a quad bike accident on Feb. 1st 2011. Regarding his accident, he said “I couldn’t scream for help. It felt like pressure on my chest. I could not move my arms of legs. There was no pain.”

After the injury, he underwent surgery in which plates and screws were implanted in his neck to achieve a primary repair.

His daily life became very difficult after this event. He couldn’t dress himself and his hands no longer functioned properly.

The MRI images showed complete spinal injury at the level of C5 to C7. Doctors in his home country(South Africa) said that, as seen in the MRI images, part of the cervical spinal cord appeared to be absent. They also predicted on the basis of these findings, that Steven will stay in a wheelchair for the rest of his life.

After a review of all the medical reports and MR images provided by Steven, our chief neurosurgeon felt that Steven could be a candidate for Spinal Cord Reconstruction Surgery and Neural Growth Factor Therapy.

On September 25th 2011, Steven came to Bejing Puhua International Hospital for Spinal Cord Reconstruction Surgery and Neural Growth Factor Therapy.

Medical Condition before Spinal Cord Reconstruction Surgery and Neural Growth Factor Therapy for Spinal Cord Injury (SCI)

At admission, the physical examination showed that the muscle strength at the proximal end of the upper limbs was 5/5. Muscle strength at the dorsal end of the upper limbs was 0/5 and muscle strength of both lower limbs was 0/5.
The sensation under T5 plane was absent. Resting muscle tone of both lower limbs was slightly above average.

Spinal Cord Reconstruction Surgery and Neural Growth Factor Therapy for Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) Over 21 days

Neural Growth Factor Therapy via lumbar puncture and local injection, combined with rehabilitation therapy and TCM (traditional Chinese medicine).

In order to give him a local Neural Growth Factor injection, surgery was performed. During surgery the doctors noticed that his spinal cord was not transected. Therefore, after some preliminary surgical maneuvers, Neural Growth Factors were injected in the injured spinal cord.

Medical Condition after Spinal Cord Reconstruction Surgery and Neural Growth Factor Therapy for Spinal Cord Injury (SCI)

After the treatment for Spinal Cord Injury, Steven’s overall condition has been improved.

The greatest improvements are seen in his upper limbs. For example, he began to be able to move his fingers with increased flexibility. His arms are less stiff and he began to have better performance in his physical rehabilitation program.

His sensation plane is lower than before.

Steven’s father promised that they will keep in touch with Puhua International regarding follow-up, and us and provide timely updates of Steven’s improvements.

We congratulate this patient, and look forward to hearing of his continued improvement.

Follow up

Interview with Steven after his second treatment:

After going back to South Africa, Steven continued gaining improvement. Although he still cannot walk, it is much easier for him to conduct daily activities. Now he can control muscles in his upper arms. His hands are more flexible than before. The sensation level on his back has come down. Improvement also noticed with his temperature. In order to get further improvements, Steven came back for the second treatment.