If you've experienced a spinal cord injury (SCI), you may benefit from assistive technology or adaptive equipment as you return to your home and job. Assistive technology may help you improve your physical functioning.

  • Experience. Mayo Clinic doctors and staff have helped thousands of people recover from traumatic spinal cord injuries and nontraumatic spinal disorders using many therapies. The Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) has accredited the Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation Program at Mayo Clinic in Minnesota.
  • Integrated team. Mayo Clinic's spinal cord injury rehabilitation team is led by doctors trained in physical medicine and rehabilitation, bone and muscle surgery (orthopedic surgeons), and brain and nervous system surgery (neurosurgeons). Your treatment team also includes nurses; doctors trained in mental health (psychologists); physical, occupational and recreational therapists; and other specialists.
  • Individualized care. Your doctors will create an individualized treatment plan to meet your needs. Therapists will work with you to determine which assistive technologies may help you. The Wheelchair and Seating Clinic at Mayo Clinic in Minnesota offers many types of equipment and seating options for people who may need mobility options. Your treatment team considers you and your family to be an integral part of the treatment team, and you'll be informed and involved in making decisions and setting goals.
  • Treatment and follow-up care. Mayo Clinic doctors trained in physical medicine and rehabilitation and other staff offer a full range of spinal cord injury rehabilitation services. Your spinal cord injury rehabilitation team provides inpatient rehabilitation, outpatient rehabilitation and lifelong care. Pediatric specialists trained in physical medicine and rehabilitation care for children with spinal cord injuries at Mayo Clinic in Minnesota.
  • Research. Mayo Clinic researchers study outcomes, rehabilitation options and potential treatments for people with spinal cord injuries and conduct clinical trials.

Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., is ranked among the Best Hospitals for rehabilitation by U.S. News & World Report.

At Mayo Clinic, we assemble a team of specialists who take the time to listen and thoroughly understand your health issues and concerns. We tailor the care you receive to your personal health care needs. You can trust our specialists to collaborate and offer you the best possible outcomes, safety and service.

Mayo Clinic is a not-for-profit medical institution that reinvests all earnings into improving medical practice, research and education. We're constantly involved in innovation and medical research, finding solutions to improve your care and quality of life. Your doctor or someone on your medical team is likely involved in research related to your condition.

Our patients tell us that the quality of their interactions, our attention to detail and the efficiency of their visits mean health care — and trusted answers — like they've never experienced.

Why Choose Mayo Clinic

What Sets Mayo Clinic Apart

The Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation Program at Mayo Clinic in Minnesota offers a wide range of assistive technology and adaptive equipment for people with spinal cord injuries, including:

  • Communication options. Some people with spinal cord injuries have difficulty using a computer or phone, or writing. Assistive technology options may help you to use computers and other communication tools at school or work and during other activities. Therapists will evaluate you to determine which adaptive equipment may help you. If you need a speech generating device or other augmentative communication device, a speech-language pathologist will evaluate and recommend the most appropriate options and provide ongoing intervention as needed.
  • Other assistive technology options. People who have impaired hand function or mobility impairments often have difficulty operating controls around their home. Therapists will evaluate your need for assistive technology to live more independently and improve your ability to control your environment. The Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation Program's unit has assistive technology available for you to independently adjust your bed, operate television controls and use other controls. The unit also has mobile computers available with assistive technology software and device options to allow independent access and practice using a computer.

Mayo Clinic works with hundreds of insurance companies and is an in-network provider for millions of people. In most cases, Mayo Clinic doesn't require a physician referral. Some insurers require referrals or may have additional requirements for certain medical care. All appointments are prioritized on the basis of medical need.

Doctors trained in physical medicine and rehabilitation and other staff care for people with spinal cord injuries who may benefit from assistive technology or adaptive equipment in the Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation Program at Mayo Clinic in Minnesota.

You'll need a physician's referral to be considered for admission to the inpatient Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation Program or for an appointment in the outpatient program.

For information regarding admission to the inpatient Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation Program, call the admissions coordinator at 507-266-6442 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Central time, Monday through Friday. For information regarding outpatient appointments, please call 507-284-5000 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Central time, Monday through Friday.

Pediatric specialists trained in physical medicine and rehabilitation care for children with spinal cord injuries who require rehabilitation at Mayo Clinic in Minnesota. Children needing inpatient treatment receive care at Mayo Eugenio Litta Children's Hospital at Mayo Clinic in Minnesota.

Your child will need a physician's referral to be considered for admission to the inpatient program or for an appointment in the outpatient program.

For appointments or more information, call the Central Appointment Office at 507-538-3270 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Central time, Monday through Friday or complete an online appointment request form.

See information on patient services at the three Mayo Clinic locations, including transportation options and lodging.

Mayo Clinic researchers study assistive technology and adaptive equipment and other therapies for people with spinal cord injuries. Researchers also study outcomes, new treatment options and other areas related to spinal cord injury rehabilitation. Read more about spinal cord injury research.

Mayo Clinic researchers conduct many studies related to spinal cord injury, including nerve regeneration in the spinal cord system and diaphragmatic pacing system, among others.

Publications

See a list of publications by Mayo Clinic authors on spinal cord injury rehabilitation on PubMed, a service of the National Library of Medicine.

Mar. 16, 2012