Study Summary

The University of British Columbia and the Rick Hansen Institute have collaborated to implement the multicenter study, CAMPER. Approximately 100 patients (15 at the University of California, San Francisco) with acute traumatic cervical and thoracic spinal cord injuries (SCI) are anticipated to enroll within 48 hours of their injury. The purpose of this study is to enhance neurologic outcome of individuals with SCI by improving acute clinical care and to establish biomarkers of injury severity. A lumbar intrathecal catheter will be inserted pre-operatively for the measurement of intrathecal pressure (ITP) and the collection of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) samples. Spinal cord perfusion pressure (SCPP) will be calculated as the difference between mean arterial pressure (MAP) and the ITP.

CSF samples will be obtained from the intrathecal catheter to analyze the expression of the following biochemical markers: including interleukin (IL)-6, IL-8,  monocyte chemo-attractant protein (MCP)-1, glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), S100B, and tau.  The objectives of this aspect of the study will be twofold. First, we will evaluate the accuracy of these inflammatory and neuronal markers at classifying the initial severity of paralysis and at predicting the extent of neurologic recovery. Second, we aim to characterize the temporal pattern of expression of these proteins to provide a more complete description of the human pathophysiology of SCI 

Study Sites

  • Hamilton Health Sciences Centre
  • Hôpital du Sacré-Coeur
  • London Health Sciences Centre - Victoria Campus
  • Stanford University Medical Center
  • QEII HEalth Sciences Centre
  • Vancouver General Hospital
  • Hôpital du Sacré-Coeur
  • University of California, San Francisco: Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital 

What is involved? 

  • ​Access to the patient's hospilitizaiton records for the SCI visit. 
  • Intrathecal lumbar drain that will remain inserted for a maximum 5 days. 
  • CSF samples will be collected 3 times a day for the duration of drain insertion. 
  • Blood samples will be collected 3 times a day for the first 5 days of drain insertion. 
  • International Standard for Neurological Classification of Spinal Cord Injury (ISNCSCI) motor and sensory assessments conducted at key timepoints during the patient's hospital stay, 3 months, 6 months, and 12 months post-injury. 
  • Pain assessment questionnaires in hospital, 3 months, 6 months, and 12 months post-injury. 

Who can participate?

  • Male or Female ≥17
  • Complete (AIS A) or incomplete (AIS B,C) acute SCI involving bony spinal levels between C0 and L1.
  • Blunt (non-penetrating) SCI treated either surgically or non-surgically.
  • Patient is admitted less than 48 hours from time of injury (must insert lumbar intrathecal catheter within 48 hours of injury).
  • English speaking
  • Willing and able to provide informed consent.