10 spinal cord injury statistics

Written by Adam Schrag | February 22, 2017 | Print  |

Brain and Spinal Cord presented statistics on what physicians can expect from their spinal cord injury patients and what the patients can expect from their injuries.

Here are 10 points that outline their findings:


1. 259,000 people in the U.S. live with SCI:

  • The average age at the time of injury is 40.2 years, a figure which has risen as the U.S. median age has risen since the 1970s.
  • 80.9 percent of spinal cord injury patients are males.


2. SCI percentage by race/ethnicity since 2005:

  • 66.1 percent Caucasian
  • 27.1 percent African American
  • 8.1 percent Hispanic
  • 2 percent Asian


3. SCI causes since 2005:

  • 42.1 percent motor vehicle accidents
  • 26.7 percent falls
  • 15.1 percent violence
  • 7.6 percent sports incidents
  • 8.6 percent other


4. Overall, violence-caused SCI percentages have declined since a peak of 24.8 percent from 1990 to 1999. Today, SCI sparked by violence are mostly caused by gunshot wounds.


5. Patient condition at time of hospital discharge:

  • 30.1 percent incomplete quadriplegia (tetraplegic)
  • 25.6 percent complete paraplegia
  • 20.4 percent complete quadriplegia (tetraplegic)
  • 18.4 percent incomplete paraplegia


6. Average length of stay:

  • 12 days in the hospital
  • 37 days in rehabilitation center


7. Patient occupational status:

  • 57.5 percent of SCI patients are employed at the time of the injury
  • 11.5 percent are employed one year after the injury
  • 35.4 are employed 20 years after the injury


8. Residence status after the injury:

  • 87.8 percent live in their private residences
  • 6.8 percent live in hospitals, group living homes, etc.
  • 5.7 percent live in nursing homes


9. At the time of the initial injury, over 50 percent of SCI patients are single. Married patients' divorce rates rise after SCI.


10. Leading causes of death for SCI patients are pneumonia, pulmonary embolism and septicemia. Renal failure had been the leading cause of death in SCI patients until recent urologic management developments began saving more lives.


More articles on spine:
Study: spine patients think they receive less radiation than they do — 5 takeaways

Dr. Christopher Duntsch sentenced to life in prison for injuring his patients: 5 key takeaways

Spinal fusion outcomes: Primary vs. revision procedures — 5 key notes

© Copyright ASC COMMUNICATIONS 2020. Interested in LINKING to or REPRINTING this content? View our policies here.

Top 40 Articles from the Past 6 Months