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Spinal Cord Injury Causes

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Spinal cord injuries (SCI) are the result of bruising, tearing or crushing of the spinal cord tissue. Additional damage can be caused by swelling of the spinal cord.

Automobile accidents, including rollovers and crashes, are the leading cause of SCI, accounting for more than 40 percent of new injuries each year.

 Additional causes include:

  • Acts of violence (24 percent)—often involving gunshot and knife wounds
  • Falls—including those caused by defective products (22 percent)
  • Sports (8 percent)—impact sports and swimming/diving
  • Other (2%)—alcohol use is a factor in one out of every four SCI

In addition, diseases, such as cancer, arthritis, osteoporosis, can also cause SCI.

Learn about Spinal Cord Injury Types



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