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  • Old spinal cord injury t/11 t/12 fusion

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    Old 11-01-2009, 08:42 AM   #1
    Join Date: Nov 2009
    Posts: 2
    rfsvt HB User
    Old spinal cord injury t/11 t/12 fusion

    I'm new to the forums and I have a question about an old injury. I fell approximately 12' off of a truck and onto a metal ladder which was at a 45 degree angle. I broke t11 and t12 which were later fused/bolted together. My spinal cord is 1/2 the width in that area. This happened about 18 years ago.

    Recently, I was diagnosed with SVT arrhythmia, possible cardiac sudden death (6 second pauses in the heart), and low blood pressure (bradycardia). The svt ablation failed and a permanent 2 wire pacemaker was implanted because of the low blood pressure. I've noticed red outs, palpatations, dizziness, etc for several years and had gotten worse. I'm wondering if autonomic dysreflexia - bradycadria can exist with a narrowed spinal canal at t11-t12??

    I've been doing some research into sympathetic / parasympathetic nervous system and potential problems that can arrise from spinal cord damage. Is there a relationship between the lesser and greater splanchnic nerves not functioning with ea other and cardiac problems? I think there is some sort of link.. maybe the vagus nerve that runs from t1-l2?

    Any help with this is greatly appreciated.

    A link:
    About halfway down the page "Frequency" United States... kind of an interesting read.

    Thank you


    Last edited by moderator2; 11-01-2009 at 12:44 PM. Reason: please do not post websites except as described in the Posting Policy

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    Old 11-07-2009, 08:11 PM   #2
    Join Date: Jan 2005
    Location: USA
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    PNo HB User
    Re: Old spinal cord injury t/11 t/12 fusion

    First of all I need to say - I am not a doctor, a healthcare person, and have not had this condition. But it did peak my interest a little so I did some research. Basically from all that I found that it is possible with upper or thoracic Spinal Cord Injuury (SCI) which I think severe narrowing would fall into that category that it could predispose a patient to several events especially like:
    1) CVA (stroke) and 2) Predispose patient to A. fib. by altering the normal. pattern of repolarization of the atria,making the heart susceptible to reentrant-type arrhythmias.

    You said you have an SVT arrhythmia and that is a reentrant type tacycardia. So I would assume it is possible that your spine is helping contribute to your situation. However, the reading also said that it is more common with high level SCI. I am wondering if you ever had your cervical looked at too? With the lower spinal cord at T11-12 that portion controls things like our bladder and our urinary functions and the spinchter. I don't know if it is possible to affect up stream cardiac functions. Do you have any other damage like in the upper T's?

    Tachyarrhythmias are broadly characterized as being a supraventricular tachycardia (SVT), defined as a tachycardia in which the driving circuit or focus originates, at least in part, in tissue above the level of the ventricle (i.e., sinus node, atria, AV node, or His bundle). When you research look for spine conntections to these things.

    If I were in your shoes, I think I would be having my spine re-evaluated. It is possible your cardiac care is focused very much on that and not looking for some other originating cause - you wouldn't be the first case. Especially if you do not have a familial history of heart disease and you yourself do not have heart disease but are having all these problems, I would be pushing on the doctors. Do you have any symptoms besides the cardiac stuff?

    For research ideas, look for things like spinal cord injury instead of narrowing - that might not come up as much. I found quite a number of papers so you should easily find them.

    On the brachycardia - I looked for that as well, article on " Cardiovascular abnormalities accompanying acute spinal cord injury in humans: incidence, time course and severity", and you would be interested in this "Segmental organization of spinal reflexes mediating autonomic dysreflexia after spinal cord injury."

    Hope this helps you out a litle! Good luck.

    Last edited by PNo; 11-07-2009 at 08:16 PM.

    Old 11-10-2009, 11:18 AM   #3
    Join Date: Nov 2009
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    rfsvt HB User
    Re: Old spinal cord injury t/11 t/12 fusion


    Thank you for your reply. I never really thought about looking at my upper t-spine because it was numb and none of the military doctors every looked at it except for x-rays and they said nothing was broken in the upper T-spine area. That was back in 1991 Germany. They didn't do any tests like MRI or CT scans back then. Last week, I got a good look at my 2005 MRI of my T + L spine. It looks bad.

    the cross sections of the spinal cord from t-1 to t-12 area all messed up. T1 and 2 have upper left bone fragments floating around. T4 has a couple of dark areas and t5-6 look like triangles. T7-9 have some more dark areas and T10-12 were damaged and looks like lines going through ea one.

    A lot of my back is numb and below the T11-12 fusion, I have osteo from L1 down. L1 spinal cord has a split from the center going to the upper right. I was told when I got out that my back injury would be a life long problem but I never got anything for it until 3 years ago.



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