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Collapse of vertebral body. Added bolts. Now unable to move legs. Can it get normal? After how long?

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Neurologist, Surgical
Practicing since : 1997
Answered : 65 Questions
I would like to consult neurosurgeon cum oncologist regarding the collapse of D12 vertebral body in my brother's accident case. A surgery was made and they added bolts to support the vertabrae. Now his condition is : he is unable to move his legs by himself. It was said by doctors that to come back to his normal depends on the confidence he has to walk or move the leg. Please let me know doctors whether he can become normal and how much time it will take for that. I am unable to express lots of the questions I had regarding his recovery. Answer for the only question I am expecting is Will he be normal and how much time it will take and how should we further proceed regarding his recovery?
Posted Tue, 22 May 2012 in Multiple Sclerosis
Answered by Dr. Shivakumar S. Kupanur 5 hours later

Thanks for posting your query.

I have gone through the reports provided by you. According to the history and MRI report, there is fracture of D12 vertebral body and changes in other vertebrae. Most important cause for weakness in his lower limbs is edema. Whatever treatment performed is to remove the pressure on the spinal cord at the fracture site and stabilized with rods and screws to prevent bending and causing further injury.

To predict the improvement in his lower limb power, I need to know his present neurological findings. If he has some movement in the limb and bowel and bladder sensation, usually they improve significantly, sometimes near total recovery with good physiotherapy over a period of few weeks to months.

Most important is good physiotherapy and patience.

I wish him speedy recovery and normal life.

I hope, I have answered your query. I will be available for follow up queries if any.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Collapse of vertebral body. Added bolts. Now unable to move legs. Can it get normal? After how long? 10 hours later
Thank you doctor for reply

From your reply, I felt positive about his recovery to normal. To know his present neurological findings what examinations/tests has to be performed? Please let me know so that I can provide that information also to you. Presently he has very slight movement of the right leg and no control over the left leg for him. I hope so bladder sensation is fine because he is able to feel about the urine sensation. Also he had got fracture of left hand at the shoulder part and plates were implanted in the operation as of support. Apart from this he also went for the operation at the head part for a blood clot. Sorry for that I did not posted this information in main question. The reason for that is all of them can be recovered slowly and may not show long term effect. But the injury to spine is major so I did so.

His discharge from the hospital may take 10 days more. So can I keep in touch with you until that time. Thinking so I am not closing and reviewing the discussion doctor.

Thank you
Answered by Dr. Shivakumar S. Kupanur 24 hours later
I am sorry for getting back late.

When I talk about neurological findings, I mean, clinical findings like power of lower limb, grade of sensation and reflexes. These are findings when a qualified physician performs a complete examination

It is good to know that your brother has some movement in right leg and bladder sensation. He has good chances of recovery. But, let me tell you again, chances are good with physiotherapy. So I would suggest that you continue physiotherapy at home as well.

I hope that the head injury part is stable now. Periodical neurological examination is necessary to know how much he is improving..

I hope this helps o clarify your doubts. Please feel free to communicate to me through this portal whenever required.

I wish him speedy recovery.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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