Biggest Risk

The  biggest risk almost every spinal cord injured person with sensory impairment, faces is a  pressure sore.
Surgery or not, following the skin care protocol of turning every two hours is a must to prevent pressure ulcers.

Post-surgery management is critical: Once cleared by the surgeon, it is perfectly ok to turn a patient after a surgery is done. Surgery is done to mobilize the patient. This is first and foremost necessary to avoid occurrence of pressure ulcers or bedsores.

The process of turning a patient is called ‘log rolling’. At least three persons are required for log rolling – one to support the head, one to support the trunk and one to hold the leg. On the count of 1,2,3, they turn the patient as a log rather than segmental rotation of the head first, body next and legs last. As a log, he is turned to the left or right, and pillows are placed at the back to ensure that he does not roll back.

Persons with complete spinal cord injury are always at risk of pressure ulcers (bed sores). Persons with incomplete injury will be at risk till they get some sensation. So by default in the initial few months turn every spinal injured person once every 2 hours. This has to continue until it is proven that he recovers sensation.

Position changing protocol must also be followed for persons managed non-surgically.

When sitting, to provide some relief for the seating bones (ischium), doing push  ups once in 10-20 minutes is a must. Each push up must be for about 20 seconds. Doing pushups vertically may be difficult for those who have not been properly rehabilitated. Till proper training is given they can relive pressure by shifting forward, backward or to the sides for about 20 seconds every time.

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