Spinal cord injuries are one of the worst types of injury a person can suffer. However, the psychological and physiological ramifications are even more traumatizing if you’re a child.
Currently, there are over 100,000 children in the U.S., approximately 1,500 in Virginia alone, living with some sort of spinal cord injury (SCI). This is why funding for pediatric SCI research has become increasingly important in order to help find better treatments and rehabilitation techniques for SCI victims in general, but especially for pediatric victims.
The Kosair Charity, based in Kentucky and Indiana, realizes how important this research is, and therefore donated $7.3 million to the University of Louisiana in support of toward Dr. (M.D.) Andrea Behrman’s pediatric SCI research. Along with Kosair’s generous gift, the University itself donated an additional $2.3 million. This makes a grand total of $10 million for the further study and implementation of Dr. Behrman’s hands-on rehabilitation study.
Although a lot of SCI studies are focusing on neurosciences and brain stimulation, Behrman’s technique relies on locomotor training, an intense physical therapy regime. The treatment requires the child—assisted by trained personnel—to practice standing and stepping on a treadmill repeatedly, using the support of his or her own body weight. It is hoped that this repetition will retrain the victim’s brain to perform these functions on its own, without external assistance.
The University of Louisiana will be using the donation to fund the research, purchase advanced pediatric SCI equipment, and employ personnel to help with the treatments.
The Virginia spinal cord injury lawyers at Shevlin Smith wish to congratulate Dr. Behrman and the University, as well as thank them for their continued efforts in helping the childhood victims of spinal cord injuries.