Vol. 42, No. 5 JRRD tipsheet: Focus on spinal cord injury and prosthetics

The current issue of the Journal of Rehabilitation Research and Development (JRRD) includes eight articles on spinal cord injury--addressing topics such as bone mineral density, women's sexuality, and chronic pain--and three articles on prosthetics research. Other articles in this issue focus on robotic therapy for stroke rehabilitation, the diabetic foot, and vocational rehabilitation for patients with schizophrenia. Full-text articles are available, free, online at www.rehab.research.va.gov.

Majority of veterans with spinal cord injury report chronic pain, pg. 573
In a telephone survey of veterans with spinal cord injury (SCI), 76 percent of participants reported chronic pain. A group of veterans with SCI who received care from one regional Department of Veterans Affairs SCI Center during a 3-year period completed a telephone survey about pain frequency, duration, intensity, exacerbating factors, and effects on daily activities. The majority of the chronic pain components occurred daily and lasted most of the day. Average pain intensity in the week before the interview was high-moderate to severe, while worst pain intensity was severe. Two-thirds of the chronic pain components interfered with daily activities.

Chronic pain patterns stable in patients with spinal cord injury, pg. 585
In a recent study of pain and spinal cord injury (SCI), investigators found that specific pain patterns (e.g., pain below the level of injury, upper-limb pain in tetraplegia, and severe, persistent pain) were stable in chronic SCI. They conducted two surveys 18 months apart to examine the stability of pain characteristics and pain-induced interference with sleep and daily activities. While pain locations, pain descriptors, pain intensities, and temporal aspects were similar between surveys, aching pain and sleep interference significantly increased. Information about the long-term course of pain in the SCI popu

Contact: Judith LaVoie
410-962-1800 x229
VA Research Communications Service

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