Spinal cord injuries. A clinical, pathological, and experimental study

Alexander, Shedden (1964) Spinal cord injuries. A clinical, pathological, and experimental study. Ch.M thesis, University of Glasgow.

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When a junior member of the staff of the Professorial Surgical Unit in the Royal Infirmary, Glasgow in 1957, I was able to observe two cases of traumatic quadriplegia. Neither patient was completely paralysed. One was discharged after a little more than a year so incapacitated by spasms and pains that he remained almost completely bed-ridden thereafter. The other died after two years in the ward with severe pressure sores, urinary infection and advanced paraplegia-in-flexion. Both patients had been nursed conscientiously and competently, both had received physiotherapy, and neurosurgical, orthopaedic and urological advice had been sought and followed. I could not reconcile the outcome of these cases with references in publications and text-books to revolutionary changes which had taken place in the treatment of spinal cord injuries and decided to investigate the matter. My original intention was to find out how cases of spinal cord injury fared in other hospital units in Glasgow. In the course of my investigations I became fascinated by the problems of the condition and the extent to which they transgressed nearly all the specialized compartments into which hospital practice is divided. The first part of this thesis is a clinical review of fifty-two cases of spinal cord injury treated in the Glasgow are with several observations, some of which are original. In my reading I found out that descriptions of the pathology of the injured cord tended to be derivative. In the course of a year spent in the Mayo Clinic, U.S.A. I studied microscopic specimens of over one hundred injured spinal cords, my attention being focused particularly on the appearances of axons. The second part of the thesis presents material from a small number of these, each one selected to show typical appearances of axons at different times after injury. In addition, histological material from two of the cases in the clinical review who came at post-mortem is presented. The third and last part of the theses is the presentation of an experimental study upon the spinal cord made in the course of my stay at the Mayo Clinic.

Item Type: Thesis (Ch.M)
Qualification Level: Masters
Additional Information: Adviser: F WL Kerr
Keywords: Medicine
Date of Award: 1964
Depositing User: Enlighten Team
Unique ID: glathesis:1964-73813
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 14 Jun 2019 08:56
Last Modified: 14 Jun 2019 08:56
URI: https://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/73813

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