Dynamic Chiropractic - December 1, 1997, Volume 15, Issue 25

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Book Review -- By Steven Savoie, DC

Title: Spinal Cord Injury Clinical Outcomes from the Model Systems
Authors: Samuel L. Stover, MD; Joel A. DeLisa, MD, MS; Gale G. Whiteneck, PhD
Publication: Hardcover, 376 pages
Publisher: Aspen Publishers, Inc.
Gaithersburg, Maryland, 1995
(800) 638-8437.
Category: Doctor education
Price: $70

This text deals with spinal cord injury. The level of injury discussed is clearly beyond the conservative care provided by the chiropractic profession, but some of this information presented may be of use to chiropractors. There are spinal cord injury patients who do and will seek out chiropractic care for some of the sequelae to their primary injury.

The text discusses in some detail the model spinal cord injury concept, and the collaborative database used to collect, coordinate and distribute information on spinal cord injuries (SCI). The book then goes on to the epidemiology of SCI. This includes a thorough review of the literature on this topic. All categories of classification, age, gender, race, geographic distribution, marital status, and level of education are covered. The various etiologies of SCI are also presented with motor vehicle crashes being the predominant cause.

The chapter on emergency and acute management of spine trauma focuses primarily on the surgical interventions used to stabilize those who have suffered severe spinal trauma. The complications found in these patients are discussed in relation to the prevalence of these complications. An excellent discussion of centers specializing in this area and the network that connects them is included and could be of interest to doctors of chiropractic.

The remaining chapters are devoted to the various management problems SCI patients present. There are also chapters on economic impact and the long-term survival of spinal cord injured patients.

The book is well written and extensively referenced. Its use to the chiropractic profession is questionable. It does have some information from which chiropractors treating SCI patients could benefit, but this book does not need to be on everyone's shelf. It should be a book we are all aware exists and can refer to on those occasions when we might need it.

Savoie Rating: 8.5 out of 10 for its content, but 3 out of 10 for usefulness.