Traumatic spinal cord injury (TSCI)

Between 0.05% and 0.1% of the population are disabled as a result of traumatic spinal cord injury (TSCI). The majority of people with TSCI are left tetraplegic and immobile, and risk developing the non-neurological complications of TSCI (e.g. renal failure, lung injury, wound and urinary sepsis, etc), which require specialist intervention and can ultimately be fatal (TSCI mortality ~1%). Because of the costs of specialist long term care, in some countries TSCI accounts for as much as 0.4% of national healthcare expenditure.

Despite experimental advances in neural repair and stem cell therapies, current treatment of TSCI is very much dependent on intensive physical therapy and effective medical management of the non-neurological complications of TSCI.

Our research is primarily concerned with restoring movement after TSCI using brain-machine interfaces. However, improvements in movement are also likely to have beneficial effects on the more chronic non-neurological complications of TSCI.

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