Why SCI research matters


What is spinal cord injury?

Spinal cord injury (SCI) is damage to the spinal cord that causes a temporary or permanent change in function.

In most cases, paralysis is caused by acute damage to the spinal cord following a traumatic injury. Nerve fibres are disrupted and nerve cells at, and around, the site of injury are destroyed.

An injury of the spinal cord not only impacts the ability to move your limbs; the damage also causes a large number of secondary health complications.

What is it like to live with SCI?

Living with a SCI is much more than being paralysed. It’s more than not being able to walk.  People with SCI face many challenging secondary health complications that diminish quality of life and capacity for independence.

What are secondary health complications?

  • Loss of control of bladder function
  • Loss of control of bowel function
  • Sleep apnoea
  • Dysfunctional blood pressure
  • Sexual Health complications
  • Lung problems
  • Bone and joint problems
  • Psychological challenges, and vocation
  • Loss of deep sensation necessary to prevent pressure sores

Find out how research can help