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Year : 2014  |  Volume : 17  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 767-771

Nonoperative treatment of acute traumatic spinal injuries: A prospective study

1 Division of Neurosurgery, Departments of Surgery, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Calabar, Cross River State, Nigeria
2 Neurosurgical Unit, Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Idi Araba, Lagos, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
MON Nnadi
Division of Neurosurgery, Department of Surgery, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Calabar, Cross River State
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1119-3077.144395

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Background: Traumatic spinal injury is a major cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. There is no agreed method of care. Neurological recovery in complete injury has been dismal. Aims and Objectives : The aim of this study is to determine the neurological recovery at discharge in traumatic spinal injury patients managed nonoperatively in our center. Materials and Methods: This was a prospective descriptive study carried out on traumatic spinal injury patients managed by neurosurgical unit in our center from August 2010 to July 2013. The unit started in July 2010 with virtually no available facilities for surgical care for these patients. All patients were managed nonoperatively. The unit recorded data of the patients in accident and emergency, intensive care unit, and wards using structured proforma. Data were analyzed using Epi Info 7 software. Results: There were 76 patients studied of which 57 were males and 25 were females. Fifty three were caused by road traffic accident. Nineteen were complete injury. Patients with incomplete injuries did well at discharge. Completeness of injury significantly affected the outcome. Conclusion: The neurological recovery in incomplete spinal injuries in our study was good, but poor in complete injury. Conservative treatment should be adopted in developing countries in patients with poor resources and in centers where facilities are not available for adequate imaging and surgical care. Trauma system is imperative in our country.

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