Armin Curt
Armin Curt 
Armin Curt, Paraplegikerzentrum Universitätsklinik Balgrist, Zürich, Schweiz

Taking the next steps: From outcome measures to interventions in SCI rehabilitation

Funded in: 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015

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Background of EMSCI (European Multicenter Study about Spinal Cord Injury)

Since its initiation in 2001 the EMSCI network has grown to comprise 19 SCI centres in 7 European countries and very successfully performed the prospective observation of clinical and functional outcomes in more than 2000 spinal injured patients Its particular strength lies in the prospective longitudinal cohort observation of clinical and electrophysiological data for monitoring the course of neurological and functional outcomes during the rehabilitation in traumatic SCI.

Approaching clinical interventions

While the course of recovery in traumatic SCI can be profiled it remains rather unclear, what interventions (i.e. rehabilitation procedures) are actually routinely applied during SCI rehabilitation and how they influence the course of recovery. To better appreciate the efforts required to effectively influence recovery and achieve clinically meaningful improvements two domains will be evaluated in more detail:

  • the “time domain” of recovery (the best onset and duration of treatment, the time scales for recovery
  • the “intensity domain” of rehabilitation (frequency and intensity of rehabilitation, the manifold areas like upper-lower limb, bladder-bowel, self care, mobility etc.)

Insights from these domains will be essential to transition from the evaluation of outcomes to an appropriate appreciation of the basic requirements for interventions such as optimization of rehabilitation efficacy.