Short communication| Volume 276, ISSUE 1-2, P199-201, January 15, 2009

Download started.


The spinal cord in lightning injury: A report of two cases


      We present 2 patients in whom the predominant neurological complication following lightning strike was spinal cord injury. One patient, who was followed for 5 years, showed clinical, electrophysiologic and MRI evidence of cervical spinal cord injury. This patient had significant recovery, which in part, may be related to early and intense rehabilitation. The second patient presented with the symptoms and signs of spinal shock which then evolved into a myelopathy. Follow-up several months later showed almost complete resolution of symptoms. These patients demonstrate that the prognosis of spinal cord injury complicating a lightning strike may not be uniformly poor.


      To read this article in full you will need to make a payment

      Purchase one-time access:

      Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
      One-time access price info
      • For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
      • For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'


      Subscribe to Journal of the Neurological Sciences
      Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
      Already an online subscriber? Sign in
      Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect


        • Curran E.B.
        • Holle R.L.
        • Lopze R.E.
        Lightning fatalities, injuries and damage reports in the United States, 1959–1994.
        in: NOAA Technical Memorandum NWS SR-193. National Weather Service, Fort Worth, TX1997: 1-64
        • Cherington M.
        Neurologic manifestations of lightning strikes.
        Neurology. 2003; 60: 182-185
        • Kleinshmidt-DeMasters B.K.
        Neuropathology of lightning-strike injuries.
        Semin Neurol. Dec 1995; 15: 323-328
        • Cherington M.
        More on MRI of lightning injury.
        J Okla State Med Assoc. 1997; 90: 74
        • Cherington M.
        • Vervalin C.
        Lightning injuries — who is at greatest risk?.
        Phys SportsMed. 1990; 18: 58-61
        • Sharma M.
        • Smith A.
        Paraplegia as a result of lightning injury.
        BMJ. 1978; 2: 1464-1465