Spinal Cord Injury (SCI)

A spinal cord injury (SCI) usually begins with a sudden, traumatic blow to the spine that fractures or dislocates vertebrae. The damage begins at the moment of injury when displaced bone fragments, disc material, or ligaments bruise or tear into spinal cord tissue. Spinal cord injury results in a complex system of processes that lead to the inability of the spinal cord to transmit nerve signals from the brain to the muscles of the body and from the sensory organs back to the brain. Some injuries will allow almost complete recovery. Others will result in complete paralysis.


National Spinal Cord Injury Association (NSCIA) – Mission is to enable people with SCI to make choices and take actions to achieve their highest level of independence and personal fulfillment. Includes current articles/news, injury information, chat, message boards, a quarterly publication and other areas.
75-20 Astoria Boulevard
Jackson Heights, NY 11370
Phone: 718-803-3782
Email: info@spinalcord.org

Greater Boston Chapter  – More than 15 individuals (peer mentors) who give their time to meet individuals who are newly injured or living in the community.
Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital of New England
Phone: 781-933-8666
Email: sciboston@aol.com
Peer and Family Support
Support Groups and Discussion Meeting Times

American Spinal Injury Association (ASIA) Mission is to promote and establish standards for health care, education, to foster research and to facilitate communication between members.
2020 Peachtree Road, NW
Atlanta, GA 30309
Phone: 404-355-9772
Email:  asia.office@asia-spinalinjury.org

Center for Paralysis Research – The Center for Paralysis Research at Purdue University tests promising methods of treatment for spinal cord injuries.
408 South University Street
West Lafayette, IN 47907
Phone: 765-494-7600
Email: cpr@perdue.edu

Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation – Team of information specialists is available to answer questions and provide individualized support.  Web site has news, peer mentoring, resources, events and advocacy info as well as other information.
Call an Information and Referral Specialist at (800) 539-7309
636 Morris Turnpike Suite 3A
Short Hills, NJ 07078
Phone: 800-225-0292

  • Living with Paralysis – A program of the Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation, providing a comprehensive, national source of information for people living with paralysis and their caregivers to promote health, foster involvement in the community and improve quality of life.
  • Funding for Nonprofits – Pioneered by Dana Reeve, the Reeve Foundation Quality of Life Grants Program awards grants to nonprofit organizations that serve the disability community. Learn more about the program and find out how to apply.
  • Christopher Reeve Foundation NeuroRecovery Network (NRN) – A cooperative network of cutting-edge rehabilitation centers designed to provide and develop therapies to promote functional recovery and improve the health and quality of life of people living with paralysis.  NRN’s staff include directors, physicians, supervisors, physical therapists and rehab technicians. For information about enrollment at Boston Medical Center contact Jane Wierbicky, RN, at jane.wierbicky@bmc.org

Helping Hands: Monkey Helpers – A non-profit organization that trains monkeys to  help adults with spinal cord injuries and other mobility impairments live more independent and engaged lives.
541 Cambridge Street
Boston, MA 02134
Phone: 617-787-4419
Email: mail@monkeyhelpers.org

Wings for Life – A non-profit organization researching into cures for paralysis caused by spinal cord injury. This site has been created as an information resource for interested individuals, organizations and governments who wish to understand more about, and perhaps, contribute to spinal cord injury research.

Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA) – This site is a resource center for veterans and for all Americans with a spinal cord injury or disease, as well as their families and the professional communities who serve them. Info on topics like veteran’s benefits, medical issues, accessible design, sports and recreation activities.
801 18th ST, NW
Washington DC 20006-3517
Phone: 800-424-8200
Email: info@pva.org

The UAB-SCIMS Information Network – Fact sheets, equipment info, accessibility, news, research projects, information and statistics.
UAB Model System Office of Research
619 19th St South, SRC 529
Birmingham, AL 35249
Phone: 205-934-3283
Email: sciweb@uab.edu

Spinal Cord Injury Network International (SCINI) – Non-profit organization dedicated to facilitating access to quality health care by providing information and referral services to spinal-cord-injured individuals and their families.
Phone: 800-548-2673
Email: spinal@sonic.net

Travis Roy Foundation – The Travis Roy Foundation provides grants to victims of spinal cord paralysis based on financial need and also funds research. In addition to grant information, the web site contains information about Foundation events, fund-raisers and programs, as well as spinal cord injury information and resources.
Hemenway and Barnes LLP
60 State Street, 8th Floor
Boston, MA 02109
Phone: 617-619-8257
Email: info@travisroyfoundation.org

United Spinal AssociationDedicated to enhancing the quality of life of all people living with spinal cord injuries and disorders (SCI/D), including veterans, and providing support and information to loved ones, care providers and professionals.
75- 20 Astoria Boulevard
Jackson Heights, NY 11370
Phone: 800-404-2898
Email: info@unitedpsinal.org

Other Information:

Spinal Cord Injury Internet Guide – Boston University guide contains links to websites with information for all areas of living with spinal cord injuries.

SCI CareCure Forums  – The art and science of managing therapies, routines, medication, supplies, equipment and everything else needed to maintain the spinal injured person in top health. Ask SCI-Nurses questions in the Care Forum, New SCI Forum, Relationships and Sexuality Forum, Transverse Myelitis & Atraumatic SCI, and other forums. Visit Caregiving, Equipment and Exercise Forums.
W. M. Keck Center for Collaborative Neuroscience

SCI CareCure Community – Therapies that restore function in spinal cord injury and related conditions. The Cure Forum contains comprehensive and up-to-date news on curing spinal cord injury. The Research Forums lists abstracts of the latest scientific articles on brain injury and stroke, neurodegeneration, multiple sclerosis, neuropathic pain, spinal cord injury and stem cells.Exchange information about Clinical Trials, Equipment & Services, Doctors & Clinics

Spinal Injury Hospitals and Rehabilitation Centers:

    • Spaulding New England Regional Spinal Cord Injury Center (SNERSCIC) – We are pleased to announce the formation of the Spaulding New England Regional Spinal Cord Injury Center (SNERSCIC) Model System, representing a merger of the Spaulding-Harvard Spinal Cord Injury Model System and the New England Regional Spinal Cord Injury Center Model System.
      Boston University Medical Campus
      Talbot Building, T5W
      715 Albany Street
      Boston, MA 02118
      Phone: 617-638-7314
      Phone: 855-607-1804 (toll free)
      Email: SCIctr@bu.edu
    • Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital – Spaulding Rehab is one of the nation’s largest. The SCI program focuses on the restoration of the patient’s functional capabilities by maximizing physical health, improving psychological well-being and enhancing social support. Includes physical, occupational, speech, respiratory and therapeutic recreation therapists. Nursing and physician coverage are provided around the clock. Ranked as a top rehabilitation hospital by U.S. News & World Report.
      Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital Boston
      300 1st Avenue
      Charlestown, MA 02129
      Phone: 617-573-7000
    • Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital of Western Massachusetts – Rehabilitation for spinal cord injury that is powered by a team of highly qualified experts using advanced technology and treatments.
      22 State Street
      Ludlow, MA 01056
      Phone: 413-308-3380

Fact Sheet last updated on: 4/16/2020


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