J Neurotrauma 2021 Feb 1. Epub 2021 Feb 1.
Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy, Marion Murray Spinal Cord Research Center, Drexel University College of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA.
After a severe, high-level spinal cord injury (SCI), plasticity to intraspinal circuits below injury results in heightened spinal sympathetic reflex activity and detrimentally impacts peripheral organ systems. Such sympathetic hyperreflexia is immediately apparent as an episode of autonomic dysreflexia (AD), a life-threatening condition characterized by sudden hypertension and reflexive bradycardia following below-level sensory inputs; for example, pressure sores or impacted fecal matter. Over time, plasticity within the spinal sympathetic reflex (SSR) circuit contributes to the progressive intensification of AD events, as the frequency and severity of AD events increase greatly beginning ∼2 weeks post-injury (wpi). Read More