Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) is a serious physical trauma that causes damage to the spinal cord.  When the spinal cord is damaged it affects the neurons - the special nerves that carry messages from our brain to the rest of our body - disrupting communication that results in loss of movement and sensation from below the level of injury.

Damage to a spinal cord can happen in a second; the consequences last a lifetime.  People who sustain damage to their spinal cord, either through traumatic injury or disease process, can suffer lifelong paralysis and are at an increased risk of many serious health complications.

On a daily basis, people with SCI may face hurdles that most of us would find hard to imagine.  Everyday tasks can take hours to complete.  People may be ready to go back to work, but a simple fear of going to the bathroom may make it impossible.

Activities or holidays are thwarted because of reoccurring pressure ulcers or urinary tract infections.  These can lead to long spells in hospitals.

Stoke Mandeville Spinal Research promotes research projects that will lead to greater understanding of the causes of complications; development of new treatments and therapies and dissemination of best practice in areas that affect quality of life of people living with SCI