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Metastatic paraplegia: care management characteristics within a rehabilitation center.

Abstract : Study design:Retrospective study.Objectives:To determine the potential impact of rehabilitation care on associated symptoms and functional improvements of paraplegic patients with metastatic spinal cord compression.Setting:CMN Propara, Montpellier (France).Measures:Demographics, Functional Independence Measure (FIM), Frankel Modified Score and Visual Analog Scale (VAS) for pain, intercurrent adverse medical events and neurological outcome, duration of stay, survival time, rehospitalization in a non-Spinal Cord Injury unit, number of contracts defining the patients rehabilitation goals, number of contracts defining the patients duration of stay within the rehabilitation center.Results:We reviewed the charts of 26 patients. The initial neurological profile was paraplegia or paraparesis for 24 patients and quadriparesis for 2 patients. Regarding functional improvements: four patients demonstrated a poor functional evolution, five patients showed no functional improvements or very slight improvements and all the other patients showed an increase in their overall functional aptitudes. At the end of the stay, 14 patients were urinary independent. Our study reports 52 rehospitalizations in an another unit and 101 outpatient visits during their rehabilitation stay in a physical medicine and rehabilitation (PM&R) center. For the 14 patients who were deceased at the time of data collection, the median survival rate post-paraplegia was 12.7 months. A total of 12 of the 14 patients spent more than a third of their remaining survival time in a rehabilitation center.Discussion:Compared to the patients' life expectancy, their stay in a rehabilitation center is too long and prevents them from spending time with family and loved ones. The occurrence rate of the associated symptoms is high because of both cancer-related disorders and neurological disorders caused by the spinal cord lesion. PM&R professionals are faced with patients affected by chronic pain and fatigue as well as frequent rehospitalizations, short stays and outpatient stays, in the primary oncology unit. This study focuses on the need to privilege the patients' comfort over their functional rehabilitation.Spinal Cord advance online publication, 10 June 2008; doi:10.1038/sc.2008.75.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, January 6, 2009 - 2:26:05 PM
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Charles Fattal, Dominique Gault, Catherine Leblond, D. Gossens, Florence Schindler, et al.. Metastatic paraplegia: care management characteristics within a rehabilitation center.. Spinal Cord, Nature Publishing Group, 2008, epub ahead of print. ⟨10.1038/sc.2008.75⟩. ⟨inserm-00349500⟩



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