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1 in 10 people with SCI get a lower extremity fracture each year. These injuries increase the risk of other problems, such as cellulitis, pressure ulcers, blood clots, and


The Bone Quality in Individuals with Chronic SCI study aimed to further our understanding of the changes in bone which occur in the chronic phase of SCI as well as identify and better understand SCI- specific risk factors for sublesional osteoporosis and fracture. The project was an observational cohort study which followed the bone health of 90 individuals from Ontario and Quebec over a 7 year period.

  • Peripheral Quantitative Computed Tomography (pQCT) methods of assessing cortical and trabecular bone in individuals with SCI were developed

  • pQCT and dual energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) Body Composition methodologies were developed to look at intramuscular fat and sarcopenic obesity

  • SCI-specific fracture risk factors were determined and have been used to develop a fracture risk calculator




The SCI Rehabilitation Translational Continuum Team (ReCon Team) was formed to address the major gaps between research produced in human and animal laboratories and its clinical applications, and the lack of consensus on methodologies and outcomes used in SCI rehabilitation research. The Team’s goal is to facilitate the abandonment of ineffective interventions and the optimization of standardized outcomes related SCI rehabilitation.


The anticipated outcomes of this project are:

  • Implementation of laboratory exchanges within North America for trainees

  • Conduct of 13 systematic/scoping reviews on bone biomarkers, muscle imaging, surface electromyography, functional electrical stimulation and neurophysiological outcomes

  • Narrative reviews emphasizing changes in biomarker reporting and rehabilitation therapies


The WAVE project sought to assess Whole Body Vibration (WBV) as a potential treatment for sublesional osteoporosis after SCI.

  • Commercially available vibration platforms were adapted with conventional standing frames and a shame vibration device was developed for clinical trial use

  • The effect of WBV on H-reflex and bone biomarkers was explored

  • The study furthered our understanding of how vibration and standing impacts muscle and bone

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