Quadriplegia and Paraplegia Explained

What are Quad/Paraplegics?
Quadriplegics are paralysed from the neck down. This condition affects all limbs and sensation across the body. Depending on the various levels, higher or lower, and places of the injury or fracture of the spine, the person has got no use or partial us of their limbs.
Paraplegics mainly experience loss of function and sensation below the waist as a result of a very low fracture of the spine and damage to the spinal cord. Apart from this, the upper body continues to function normally.

The Causes

These disabilities along with many other are caused through:

  • Car accidents
  • Pedestrian accidents
  • Motorcycle accidents
  • Diving accidents (neck injury when diving into shallow water)
  • Sport accidents (rugby injury, motor sports, etc)
  • Gunshots (accidents or malicious muggings or attacks)
  • Tumours
  • Illness or disease

These are some of the causes of physical disability.

Special care and equipment needed
People with spinal cord injuries need 24-hour physical assistance with:

  • Bathing and dressing
  • Preparing meals and sometimes feeding
  • Emptying of urine bags and bowel management
  • Daily tasks around the house or office
  • Getting ready for bed

Quadriplegics need:

  • Battery operated wheelchairs to get around
  • Specially adapted vehicles
  • Lifting equipment for in and out of bed
  • Computers to work on
  • Assistive devices such as typing sticks and splints

Paraplegics need:

  • Manual wheelchairs dependent on upper body strength
  • Hand controls fitted to vehicles
  • Grab rails in bathrooms, etc to support them with transfers