Monday, October 4, 2010

Shoulder Function in Tetraplegia

Dr. Claes Hultling at the Spinalis Clinic in Stockholm has initiated a project to investigate the outcome of shoulder surgery on tetraplegic individuals. Available data on long term effect of loading the cervical spinal cord injured person's shoulders are scarce and not conclusive. Likewise is there a gap of knowledge of how successful surgery is to reduce pain and instability over time. In a preliminary study, Dr Hultling and coworkers examine operated person's wheelchair maneuver technique, shoulder joint range of motion, transfer strategies, pain and general activity of daily life after shoulder operations. This study is an initial attempt of identifying factors important for reducing pain and preserving function and mobility decades after injury. A comprehensive investigation including neuromuscular mapping of key shoulder muscle structure and function is necessary for better understanding of potential effect of specific exercise programs to optimize remaining motor control.