Study design: Retrospective chart audits. Objective: To investigate the optimal timing at which permanent complete cervical spinal cord injury (CSCI) can be confirmed when evaluating paralysis caused by traumatic CSCI. Setting: Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Spinal Injuries Center, Japan. Methods: Two-hundred and three patients with CSCI that was classified with an American Spinal Injury Association (ASIA) Impairment Scale (AIS) grade A (AIS A) within 72 h of the initial diagnosis of traumatic CSCI were included in the present study. Neurological data from the time of the initial diagnosis to 1 year after the injury were extracted. The number of those with recovery from AIS A and changes of AIS in the recovery were examined. Results: Thirty-five of 203 (17%) patients whose injuries were initially classified with an AIS A showed recovery from AIS A. Thirty-four of 35 (97%) patients showed recovery from AIS A within 8 weeks after injury. Conclusion: If CSCI patients with AIS A have not recovered by 8 weeks, the likelihood that they will recover from AIS A is marginal. However, this conversely means that we must consider the possibility that a patient with a traumatic CSCI classified with an AIS A may still show recovery from AIS A within the first 8 weeks after injury.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Clinical Neurology