KSA moves to contain spinal cord injuries

KSA moves to contain spinal cord injuries
Updated 10 February 2014

KSA moves to contain spinal cord injuries

KSA moves to contain spinal cord injuries

Saudi Arabia accounts for the highest rate of spinal cord injuries in the world with about 2,500 such injuries reported every year, most of them caused by road accidents.
In an interview to a local newspaper, Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz Humanitarian City Chief Executive Abdullah bin Zarah said the US, with a population of 260 million, reports about 12,000 such injuries every year.
The Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz Humanitarian City, in collaboration with Miami University, is working toward developing a technology for stem cell transplants on injured spinal cord patients to replace damaged parts. This technology, which is expensive and difficult to perfect, will revolutionize surgeries performed on patients who are paralyzed, he said.
The Humanitarian City plans to host an international conference for spinal cord injuries in March, bin Zarah said, and attributed the focus and attention on spinal cord injuries to the growing prevalence of such cases, stressing that this problem poses significant health, social, and economic burdens on both the patient and their families.
Patients suffering from spinal cord injuries in the Kingdom are mainly found in the age group of 16 to 22, many of them caused by car accidents, work related injuries, or falling off a height.
Bin Zarah said: “We are optimistic about this program as we have seen significant success during experiments on laboratory animals, when there was perceptible recovery of sensation and movement in the subjects.”
Bin Zarah also expressed hope that Saudi Arabia will be a proactive leader in this program, noting that the Humanitarian City services comply with international standards and match those available in the US and Europe.
It may be mentioned that Humanitarian City extends over an area of 1.2 million square meters, and is the largest center for rehabilitation of persons with disabilities in the Middle East.