Spinal Cord Injury and the Family: A New Guide

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Overview

Spinal cord injury, or SCI, is frequently sudden and unexpected—through accident, disease, or violence, patients temporarily lose control of their bodies and, it seems, their lives. With rehabilitation, they can learn to navigate their world once more, retraining muscles and mind to compensate for paralyzed limbs and diminished strength. But as Dr. Michelle Alpert shows here, there is far more to recapturing full, independent lives than regaining movement. Central to long-term ...

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SPINAL CORD INJURY AND THE FAMILY

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Overview

Spinal cord injury, or SCI, is frequently sudden and unexpected—through accident, disease, or violence, patients temporarily lose control of their bodies and, it seems, their lives. With rehabilitation, they can learn to navigate their world once more, retraining muscles and mind to compensate for paralyzed limbs and diminished strength. But as Dr. Michelle Alpert shows here, there is far more to recapturing full, independent lives than regaining movement. Central to long-term success is mending the family unit.

Combining Dr. Alpert’s clinical experience with patients’ own stories, Spinal Cord Injury and the Family is for individuals and their families who must climb back from injury: for the young quad couple, both quadriplegic, who wish to conceive and raise a child; for the paraplegic dad who wants to teach his daughter to drive; for the couple wondering how they can regain the sexual spark in their relationship.

The authors cover the causes of and prognosis for SCI through case studies, review common courses of rehabilitation, and answer the “what now?” questions—from daily routines to larger issues concerning sex, education and employment, childbearing, and parenting with SCI. Rich in clinical information and practical advice, the book shows how real patients and their families are living full lives after spinal cord injury.

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Editorial Reviews

Choice

Offers practical advice on dealing with the emotional turmoil that patients and families face as they make adjustments for work, school, dating, pregnancy, parenting, and other life events. This book is an invaluable resource for anyone touched by spinal cord injury.
— L. N. Massengale

Choice - L. N. Massengale
Offers practical advice on dealing with the emotional turmoil that patients and families face as they make adjustments for work, school, dating, pregnancy, parenting, and other life events. This book is an invaluable resource for anyone touched by spinal cord injury.
Library Journal

In 2006, it was estimated that approximately 11,000 Americans sustained traumatic spinal-cord injuries (SCI) each year; that number is much higher now with injured soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan. Physiatrist Alpert (associate medical director, Fairlawn Rehabilitation Hosp.) has compiled a timely and basic guide for SCI patients and their families, covering a multitude of important issues from basic spine anatomy, how injuries occur, and the impact of the injury's location to the first days after an injury, the emotional turmoil of the patient and family, and adjusting to work or school. Relationship issues, including dating, sex, fertility and pregnancy, and parenting, are painted in reassuring terms. Children with spinal cord injuries garner a separate chapter, as do the medical complications and challenges of SCI. This excellent overview with an emphasis on the physical effects of SCI will be invaluable to a growing, currently underserved audience. Highly recommended.
—Janet M. Schneider

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Product Details

Meet the Author

?Michelle J. Alpert, M.D., is Director of Rehabilitation Medicine, Hebrew Rehabilitation Center, and Clinical Instructor in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Harvard Medical School. She was the founder and first director of the Spinal Cord Injury Program at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital.

Saul Wisnia is Senior Publications Editor/Writer at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the author of numerous books.

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Table of Contents

  • Foreword by Cindy and Ted Purcell
  • Abbreviations

  1. Introduction to Spinal Cord Injury
  2. Early Days: The ER, Rehab, and Beyond
  3. Adjusting to SCI: The Return Home
  4. Back to Productivity: Work, School, and Play
  5. Dating after SCI: Out and About
  6. Sexual Function after SCI: The Next Challenge
  7. Couples and Relationship Issues: Making It Work
  8. Fertility and Pregnancy: The Possibilities
  9. Parenting with SCI: Moms and Dads on Wheels
  10. Children and Adolescents with SCI: The Next Generation
  11. Medical Complications of SCI: Do’s and Don’ts

  • Appendix: Spinal Cord Injury by the Numbers
  • Resources
  • Suggested Reading
  • Acknowledgments
  • Index

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2014

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