SCI Overview and Resources

Every year, more than 17,700 Americans survive a spinal cord injury but are left with some kind of paralysis that will last the rest of their lives. The random accidents that cause these injuries can and do happen to people from all walks of life. Car crashes caused by split second errors in judgement, falling while climbing a tree with your kids, or mishaps while diving and swimming with your friends are among the difficult stories we hear every day.

We find it helpful to stay on top of the basic statistics around spinal cord injuries so that we also remember the toll that paralysis takes on society. Some highlights:

  • It is estimated that up to 368,000 Americans live with a spinal cord injury
  • The average age at injury is 43 years old, up from 29 in the 1970s
  • Seventy-eight percent (78%) of new SCI cases are male
  • Fifty-percent (59%) of SCI cases since 2015 were among white Americans, while 24 percent have occurred to black Americans (compared to 13 percent of the overall population)
  • Vehicle accidents and falls make up 39% of these accidents
  • Depending on the age at injury and severity, the average lifetime cost ranges from $1.7 million to $5.1 million, with first year costs ranging from $375,000 to over $1.1 million!

See more spinal cord injury statistics.

Take some time to browse our resources below. If you have any questions or cannot find the information you are looking for, please feel free to Contact Us at your convenience.

SCI Resources and Information

Additional Resources

  • Unite 2 Fight Paralysis
    Looking to cure paralysis through advocacy, education, and support for research
  • The Craig H. Neilsen Foundation
    Supporting research and innovative rehabilitation programs to improve the quality of life for those with a spinal cord injury.
  • Spinal Cord Injury Manual for Patients and Families
    An online resource of information on SCI health, rehabilitation, and support.
  • Shepherd Center
    A private, not-for-profit hospital specializing in medical treatment, research and rehabilitation for people with spinal cord injury.
  • Push to Walk
    Provides individualized workouts and resources to people with spinal cord injuries and other forms of paralysis to optimize current quality of life and to prepare for future medical advancements.
  • Publications for Disabled Veterans
    As part of their mission, Paralyzed Veterans produces a wide range of publications. Click the link to see a list of what is available.
  • Project Walk Atlanta®
    Project Walk Atlanta-Spinal Cord Injury Recovery Center, is internationally recognized as a pioneer in Intense Activity-Based Recovery for individuals with Spinal Cord Injury.
  • Northwest Regional Spinal Cord Injury System
    Links to SCI online resources
  • National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center
    Spinal Cord Injury Facts & Figures
    Resources for people living with spinal cord injuries and their supporters. These evidence-based materials are available in a variety of platforms such as printable PDF documents, videos, and slideshows.
  • Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation
    For the treatment and research of SCI’s, individuals from across the country and around the world find the exceptional care and advanced treatment they need to move forward.
  • Kelly Brush Foundation
    Improving the quality of life for individuals living with SCI by purchasing adaptive athletic equipment for those with financial limitations.
  • I Live With a Disability ( is a social networking website out to give everyone the tools, ability and network to love themselves.
  • Helping Hands: Monkey Helpers for the Disabled, Inc.
    A national nonprofit serving quadriplegic and other people with spinal cord injuries by providing highly trained monkeys free of charge to assist with daily activities
  • Handicap Help
    Information on ideas and easily made tools to reduce daily frustrations, ask questions, and share your own creative ideas.
  • Facing Disability
    Facing Disability is a web resource with more than 1,000 videos drawn from interviews of people with spinal cord injuries, their families, caregivers and experts.
  • Disability Advisor
    Provides information and answers to a wide range of topics concerning government disability benefits programs. “Ask the Advisor” allows readers to submit questions online or by phone.
  • CareCure Community
    Interactive web site providing information through SCI community forums.