Lifetime Prevalence of Chronic Health Conditions Among Persons With Spinal Cord Injury

Short Title:
Lifetime Prevalence of Chronic Health Conditions Among Persons With Spinal Cord Injury
Model System:
Reference Type:
Journal Article
Accession No.:
Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Year, Volume, Issue, Page(s):
2014, vol. 1, issue 96, pp 673-679
Publication Website:
Study assessed lifetime prevalence of 7 chronic health conditions (CHCs) among 1,678 adults with chronic traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI) who were at least 1 year postinjury, and had residual neurologic effects impeding full recovery. CHCs were measured using questions from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System for diabetes (not including gestational), heart attack (also called a myocardial infarction), angina or coronary artery disease, stroke, hypertension (not including during pregnancy), high blood cholesterol, or cancer. Of the participants, 49.5 percent reported having at least 1 CHC, with 23.2 percent reporting 2 or more CHCs. The most frequently reported CHC was high cholesterol (29.3 percent), followed by hypertension (28.7 percent) and diabetes (11.8 percent). Although the prevalence of CHCs significantly increased with increasing age, only hypertension and cancer were significantly associated with years postinjury. Four CHCs (diabetes, coronary artery disease, hypertension, high cholesterol) were significantly related to mobility status as measured by injury level and ambulatory status. However, after controlling for age, years postinjury, sex, and race, mobility status became nonsignificant in relation to coronary artery disease, but it remained significantly associated with diabetes, hypertension, and high cholesterol. Clinicians should be aware of the risk of CHCs in people with SCI and should screen for these conditions and regular maintenance activities related to SCI.
Tsai, C. Koontz, A.
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