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Folate for Spinal Cord Injuries

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When a person sustains trauma to her spine, she can fracture or dislocate vertebrae in her spine, according to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS). Some people may become paralyzed or lose sensation in certain areas of the body. The MayoClinic.com points out that the most common cause of spinal cord is motor vehicle accidents, which accounts for more than 40 percent of cases. Other common causes include falls, sports injuries and acts of violence. In people ages 65 and over, falls are the most common cause of spinal cord injuries. Non-traumatic events can also cause spinal cord injuries, such as arthritis, osteoporosis and cancer.

Spinal cord injuries fall into categories: incomplete and complete. People with incomplete spinal cord injuries still have some motor or sensory functions below the site of the injury, while people with complete spinal cord injuries lose all their motor and sensory functions below the site of the injury. The MayoClinic.com explains that current treatments available for spinal cord injuries cannot reverse any damage to the spinal cord. For example, if a person sustains a complete spinal cord injury, she may never be able to walk again. But some new treatments are looking at changing this. A new study funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) notes that folate can help heal spinal cord tissue damage during an injury in rats.

But what is folate? A water-soluable B vitamin, folate can be found in certain foods, such as fruits, dried peas and beans, and leafy green vegetables, such as spinach. Folate helps with the production and maintenance of new cells—the vitamin is needed by the body to make DNA and RNA.

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.


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