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What damage happens with a spinal cord injury?

The damage that happens with a spinal cord injury usually depends on the type of injury, the severity, the location on the spinal cord, and the emergency measures that are taken immediately upon injury. Any level of the spinal cord can be injured. However, once that part of the spinal cord is damaged, there is a disruption in communication between the brain and other parts of the body. The injured part of the spinal cord no longer receives these messages. Where the exact injury occurs determines which bodily functions are diminished or lost completely. At any point on the spinal cord, dramatic changes can occur in feeling, movement, and how the body works to survive, including the ability to breathe. 

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.