Monthly Archives: July 2011

Understanding Quad vs Para

As a person with a spinal cord injury, I get a lot of questions and looks.  Many people are curious about the adaptive equipment I use, like my “sport” wheelchair (hehe, love that one!) or the hand controls on my truck, but people are almost always surprised to learn that I am a quadriplegic.  “What?! But you can move your arms!”  Paralysis, in many ways, may not be what most expect. Read the rest of this entry

Quadriplegia & Body Temperature Regulation

Did you know that many people with high-level spinal cord injuries cannot regulate their body temperature? Not only that but their bodies do not sweat to cool down or shiver to warm up. It can be a pain in the butt for a person just wanting to get out of the house in the middle of summer or winter. For caregivers, why this happens, how to avoid hypo- and hyperthermia is extremely important (pretty much as important as how to manage autonomic dysreflexia). Even more important than that is how to treat someone who has become overheated or under heated. The excerpt below from Apparelyzed explains what is know as poikilothermia, or variable body temperature.

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SCI function

This article was borrowed from The Christopher and Dana Reeve Paralysis Foundation. For this and more articles related to paralysis, please visit or

The location of the spinal cord injury dictates the parts of the body that are affected. After a complete examination, the doctor will assign a level of injury. The doctor will also determine if the injury is complete or incomplete. The level of injury and function may change; the initial level of injury may not be the same level upon discharge to rehabilitation. It is important to remember that these are general guidelines and that individual outcomes will vary. Read the rest of this entry