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No evidence that treatment with gangliosides reduces death rate or improves life for survivors after spinal cord injury

Chinnock P, Roberts I
Published Online: 
21 January 2009

Injuries to the spinal cord are often devastating. Worldwide there are up to 40 million such injuries a year. People who survive often have severe disabilities. Gangliosides are substances that occur naturally in nerve cells. They can be manufactured and there have been studies to see whether they can be used to treat various conditions where nerves have been damaged. This review found two studies where a ganglioside had been used to treat people with spinal cord injury. The treatment did not produce a lower death rate and there was no evidence that movement, feeling or quality of life was improved for those who lived.