Spinal cord injuries and its aftereffect create enormous burden to the families who become victims of the aftereffects of these disastrous injuries. The consequences are social, economical, and psychological besides medical and surgical complications. Attempt has been made to portray the larger picture of these injuries and its various ramifications. It is primarily intended for the medical students and general practitioners in understanding of these complex injuries.
Research in spinal cord regeneration is catching attention of clinicians and basic scientists. It would almost revolutionise the life and disease outcome of these unfortunate patients if we can work out a cost effective and practical treatment regimen for these victims who are unfortunately in the prime of their productive years. It was gratifying to learn that nerves in peripheral nervous system (PNS), which are outside the brain or spinal cord, did regrow. It is exciting to learn that the prospects of regrowth of spinal cord improve when these PNS cells are implanted in damaged spinal cord. Spinal cord injury is a global epidemic. A lot of research is going on in this field. Axonal regeneration, electric stimulation, Netrins, stem cells etc are few exciting fields in the area of research. It is ongoing research whereby the ability to grow human motor neurons in the laboratory will provide new insights into disease processes and could be used as alternative to animal models for finding therapeutic targets and testing drug.
Researchers have identified a wide variety of potential therapies for spinal cord injury. To efficiently evaluate these therapies, however, investigators need to carry out well-designed preclinical and clinical trials that will reveal the benefits and drawbacks of each strategy.
While all of these potential therapies appear promising, not all are at the same stage of development. Some neuroprotective drugs, including certain antioxidants and antiexcitotoxic drugs, are already being tested in humans for other purposes. Recently discovered molecules, such as those that control axon guidance, will require a great deal of basic and applied research before they can be developed into useful drugs. With so many potential therapies for spinal cord injury, investigators must carry out efficient preclinical tests to ensure that the most effective therapies proceed as rapidly as possible to clinical trials and, ultimately, to proven safety and usefulness. New animal models and better ways to monitor the success of treatments are essential to this process.
A lot has been done. A lot needs to be done. It is the principal responsibility of planners, politicians, sociologists, scientists, researchers to contribute all their might to work on strategies to reduce mortality, contain morbidity and eventually make these unfortunate victms live the life of ordinary denizens. In his humanity can raise its head again!!!!!
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About the Author
He is on the board of many social organizations. He has authored many books and is a prolific orator and teacher.
Dr Kumar Anshuman is a young and dynamic orthopedic surgeon working as an Assistant Professor in the same institute.His interest include trauma, spine surgeries and arthroscopy. He had his orthopedic training from Sir Gangaram Hospital New Delhi.A popular teacher Dr Kumar Anshuman furthered his quest of knowledge by attending various courses and workshops in India and abroad.