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Infarction of the cervical spinal cord in a 20-year-old healthy man resulting in complete quadriplegia
  1. Wajdi Safadi1,2,
  2. Saher Srour3,
  3. Igor Waksman1
  1. 1Department of Surgery, Ziv Hospital, Galilee, Israel
  2. 2Golan Polyclinic, Golan Heights, Israel
  3. 3Department of Radiology, Ziv Hospital, Galilee, Israel
  1. Correspondence to Dr Wajdi Safadi, golanpolyclinic{at}


How often are we faced with a tragic diagnosis in a young patient whose life is completely changed? Often in medicine the tragedy is short-lived: the patients never stabilise, they succumb early to their injuries or complications. We present the case of a young man in whom the exact cause of a spinal cord infarct has never been confirmed. As it transpires, regardless of the sequence of events and the time elapsed between injury and the onset of paralysis, his symptoms came with no warning, were life-threatening and terrifying. He could have had no time to understand what had happened and is now faced with what must seem an eternity to come to terms with a life of quadriplegia. He gives an account of his life for the last 7 years as he has remained at home, while life for his siblings has moved on and he watches from his bed. The triumph is his adjustment to his life now, the vigilance and care of his family and the dedication of the medical staff of a local clinic in a small village in the mountains in the north of Israel.

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