Paralysis News

Paralysis is when any muscle or muscle group cannot move voluntarily. It can be caused by many different factors, and it can affect almost any part of the body. The most common causes of paralysis are stroke and spinal cord injury. Other causes can include autoimmune diseases and diseases of the nerves.

Paralysis Complications

When muscles can’t function, that can lead to other health complications. These vary widely based on the location and severity of the muscle paralysis. For example, lower body paralysis can interfere with bowel and bladder management. Paralysis can also affect breathing and cause pain in other parts of the body. Those with paralysis may also need special skin care to prevent wounds on areas of the body that no longer move. Mental health is also a concern -- depression is two to three times more likely among those who have paralysis..

Treatment of Paralysis

Treatment depends on the nature and extent of the paralysis. Those with paralysis in the lower extremities or from the neck down, for example, may need devices for mobility, like wheelchairs. Some may even need help breathing. They will likely depend on a caretaker for some parts of their daily lives.

Many forms of paralysis cannot be cured or reversed, but rehabilitation can strengthen other muscles and help those with paralysis overcome certain limitations. Research continues on paralysis, and outcomes are improving.

SOURCES: U.S. National Library of Medicine; The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation

Date Posted
Article Title
Seniors Get Good Results From Herniated Disc Surgery

Age is no reason to avoid the operation, Norwegian researchers report

Brain-Computer Link Restores Some Movement to Quadraplegic Man

8 years after a devastating bike accident, he uses arm to eat and drink

Brain Chip Helps Paralyzed 'Type' With Their Mind

Researchers report patients showed fastest speeds seen yet in such experiments

Brain Implant Lets 'Locked-In' ALS Patient Communicate

Signals sent to hand emerge as typed message on a tablet computer, researchers report

Scientists Restore Leg Movement in Paralyzed Monkeys

Wireless connection allowed brain to send signals to spine, but human trials still a long way off

Brain Chips Help Paralyzed Man Regain Sense of Touch Using Robotic Arm

With implants, he also felt some sensation in his own fingers

The Phenomenon of Sleep Paralysis

Up to 8 percent of people experience frightening episodes of the condition, experts say

New Electrical Stimulation Therapy Can Help Stroke Patients Move Paralyzed Hand

With help of sensor-laden glove, good hand used to regain some control of inert hand

'Brain Training' Helps 8 Paralyzed People Regain Some Movement

Combination regimen jump-started reconnection between mind and body

Implanted Brain Chip Restores Hand Movement to Quadriplegic Man

Technology bypasses damaged spinal cord to help patient move fingers, hand and wrist

Monkeys Move Robotic Wheelchairs With Their Thoughts

Scientists say technology might one day help severely disabled people who have lost muscle control, mobility

Zika Virus Tied to Rare Disorder That Can Cause Paralysis

But researchers found that nearly two-thirds of study cases walked again within 3 months

Child Paralysis Cases Spiked During Virus Outbreak: Study

But definitive cause of polio-like disease remains unproved, researchers say

Magnetic Brain Stimulation Offers Promise for Stroke Victims: Study

Noninvasive transcranial therapy had effect on arm movements, researchers say

Enterovirus D68 No Deadlier for Kids Than the Common Cold: Study

CDC still doesn't know if unusual paralysis cases are caused by this virus

Paralyzed Man Walks Using Technology That Bypasses Spinal Cord

Brain signals travel through a computer that sends the message straight to the legs, researchers say

Lip Injections May Ease Challenges of Facial Paralysis

Procedure might benefit stroke, Bell's palsy, muscular dystrophy patients, researcher says

Quadriplegic Uses Thoughts to Control Robotic Arms

Research is still preliminary, but implants have worked for several patients

New Research Tightens Childhood Paralysis-Enterovirus D68 Link

Lab tests confirm half of cases in recent outbreak tied to specific virus strain

Little Improvement in Children Paralyzed After Viral Infection, Study Finds

Cluster of Colorado cases may be tied to 2014 outbreak of enterovirus D68, experts say

Migraine May Raise Risk for Bell's Palsy, Study Suggests

The headaches were tied to a doubling of odds for the facial paralysis, researchers say

2 Cases Suggest Stem Cell Transplant Might Ease 'Stiff Person' Syndrome

Rare condition causes 'tin soldier' gait, uncontrolled muscle spasms, researchers say

Scientists Inch Closer Toward Using Stem Cells for Spinal Injuries

New nerve fibers developed in lab animals from human skin

Paralyzed Person to Kick Off World Cup

Robotic 'suit' with artificial skin will put person's intention to kick the ball into motion, researchers explain

'Milestone' Therapy Produces Leg Movement in Paraplegics

Electrodes along spinal cord gave four men ability to flex toes, ankles and knees, but it's no cure, researchers report

Stem Cells Show Promise for Stroke Recovery

Early study found they can be safely transplanted into the brain; 2 patients showed significant improvement

Mysterious Polio-Like Illness Strikes Kids in California

Only a small number of cases identified, experts say, with no clear common cause

Tongue Piercing Helps Paralyzed People Drive Wheelchairs

Although not yet on the market, magnetic technology may let users move with greater speed, ease

Can Meditation Help Paralyzed People Sync Their Brains to Computers?

Practicing mind and body awareness speeds mastery of the systems, study suggests

Scientists Train Monkeys to Move Two Virtual Arms With Their Minds

They say it's the first time a brain-machine combo has coordinated movement of both limbs

ER Docs Can Tell Difference Between Stroke, Bell's Palsy

Some symptoms, such as facial paralysis, may be similar, but very few are misdiagnosed, study finds

Nerve Regrowth Technique Restores Bladder Function in Paralyzed Rats

Study authors say findings may someday help people with spinal cord injury

Injuries From Ocean Waves More Common Than Thought

Shallow surf can pose real risks, Delaware study finds

Mind Control Moves Model Helicopter in Study

Such brain-computer interfaces have potential to help people with paralysis, researcher says

Paralyzed Patient Moves Prosthetic Arm With Her Mind

Experimental robotic technology may someday help people with amputations as well, experts hope

Study Confirms Slight Rise in Paralysis Risk After Swine Flu Shot

Less than 2 'excess' cases of Guillain-Barre syndrome found per 1 million vaccinations

Can Brightly Colored Fruits, Veggies Protect Against ALS?

Study tied foods like carrots, spinach and yams to lower risk of Lou Gehrig's disease

Turning Tragedy Into Hope for Others With Spinal Cord Injury

Reeve Foundation's Alan Brown, quadriplegic for 25 years, makes case for more research and resources

Mind-Controlled Prosthetic Hand Could Be Breakthrough

Woman paralyzed 13 years from neck down can now move hand without computer assistance

Nerve Stimulation May Restore Hand Function After Spinal Injury

But success was temporary in small, early study

Guidelines Issued to Resolve Temporary Facial Paralysis

Steroid pills are preferred treatment for Bell's palsy, experts say

Writing Using the Eyes Might Help Paralyzed Communicate

Although still in development, technology may help people with ALS, other movement problems

Re-Routing Spinal Cord Signals Restores Movement in Paralyzed Rats

But experts note the technique might not work in humans

Paralyzed Patients Use Mind to Move Robotic Arm

But there's a long way to go to make this approach practical, experts say

Doctors Restore Some Hand Function to Quadriplegic Patient

Location of spinal cord damage allowed surgeons to bypass damaged nerve in arm

Wheelchair Breakdowns on the Rise, Study Finds

More than half of spinal cord injury patients surveyed had equipment problems within 6 months

'Exoskeleton' Helps Paralyzed Stand, Take Steps

More research needed to see if it strengthens muscles, experts say

Monkeys Use Brain Power, Not Hands, to 'Move' Virtual Objects

Researchers say findings from animal study might help quadriplegic patients some day

Scuba Diving May Help Paralyzed Vets

Small study finds those who learned to dive experienced physical, mental improvements

Spinal Stimulation Helps Paralyzed Man Regain Movement

If replicated, procedure may eventually help others with spine injuries