What is it about?

Administration of methylprednisolone following spinal cord injury has long been used in the clinical practice, but side effects can outweigh the potential benefits of the treatment. In this study, we assessed how methylprednisolone modifies the expression of water channels in the spinal cord that are involved in swelling and edema and found out that methylprednisolone complicated the endogenous mechanisms for recovery, adding more scientific grounds to the motion to discontinue its use in the clinics.

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Why is it important?

Methylprednisolone is still used in several clinical protocols aimed at reducing the inflammation that occurs after spinal cord injury. Mechanistically, there is no justification for this protocol and this study adds more evidence of the potentially harmful side effects.

Perspectives

Although the use of methylprednisolone after spinal cord injury is in disuse, many centers still have it as their standard protocol. More information on the mechanisms modulated by this drug will enable us to determine better what clinical protocols are worth following and what others should be abandoned altogether.

Luis B Tovar-y-Romo
Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico

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This page is a summary of: Methylprednisolone Administration Following Spinal Cord Injury Reduces Aquaporin 4 Expression and Exacerbates Edema, Mediators of Inflammation, January 2017, Hindawi Publishing Corporation, DOI: 10.1155/2017/4792932.
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