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For review: framework for a research study on epidural spinal stimulation to improve bladder, bowel, and sexual function in individuals with spinal cord injuries

Members of RHI's network were part of a National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering National Institutes of Health focused on assessing the needs of people with spinal cord injury and the use of epidural spinal cord stimulation for improving function.

The consortium is  seeking feedback from the SCI research community. Please send your comments by September 30, 2015 to . To view the report, visit www.nibib.nih.gov/2015-nibib-consortium-report.

Foreward (www.nibib.nih.gov/2015-nibib-consortium-report):

Epidural spinal cord stimulation (SCS) provides substantial potential for improving the health and quality of the life of individuals with spinal cord injury (SCI). With mounting scientific evidence in support of this intervention, the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB) explored and assessed the most current information about SCS for individuals with SCI. We sought the collaboration by colleagues at NINDS, NICHD, and the FDA. In addition, we received the cooperation and input from key scientists and researchers in this new and emerging field. Our goals were to encourage an informed discussion of the uses of SCS, to identify all pertinent issues in the study and application of this intervention, and create an organized collaboration among research stakeholders to advance the availability and use of SCS. As a result, a Consortium was created which facilitated directed communication among the scientists, and resulted in a framework for studying the effectiveness of SCS. The Consortium members conferred on a frequent basis over a period of eight months to identify the various issues which must be addressed in order for this promising new field to advance and determine the efficacy of SCS in a broader population. These issues include the scientific, medical, economic, and regulatory implications of this new approach for individuals with SCI. In the Report below, a framework is presented for examining SCS in its application to people with SCI. The therapeutic goal is improving key autonomic functions - bladder, bowel, and sexual - effectively and safely.

We welcome your comments. Please send these by September 30, 2015 to .

Roderic I. Pettigrew, Ph.D, M.D.
National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering
National Institutes of Health
Building 31, Room 1C14
Bethesda, MD 20892-2281
301-480-0679 - FAX