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Nutrition in acute spinal cord injury Presented by: Paula Carroll, Senior Clinical Dietitian


A spinal cord injury does not affect just our ability to walk and eat. Depending on the location, a spinal cord injury can affect nearly every system in our body including our skin, bladder, bowel, sexual function, breathing, temperature regulation and blood pressure. Then on top of all the physical a spinal cord injury creates a huge psychological challenge.

Paula is presenting a series of three webinars explaining the nutritional issues involved in the dietetic care of a patient with a spinal cord injury.

  1. Nutrition in acute spinal cord injury
  2. Nutrition in rehabilitation and long-term spinal injury
  3. Case studies

In this first presentation Paula describes:

  • Anatomy and classification of spinal cord injuries
  • Significant psychological impact
  • Acute pain
  • Neurogenic bowel
  • Neurogenic bladder
  • Skin and increased pressure injury risk
  • Swallowing Issues
  • Respiratory issues
  • Acute nutritional assessment
    • Changes in body composition
    • Energy and protein requirements

Paula Carroll is a senior clinical dietitian at the Prince of Wales Hospital Sydney and has worked in the area of spinal cord injury since 2014. She is passionate about ensuring people who have sustained a spinal cord injury have the resources to manage their specific nutritional needs from the acute injury to adapting long term. Paula is the lead author of the NSW Agency for Clinical Innovation consumer resource Nutrition for Adults with Spinal Cord Injury (in print).

To register for the webinar and associated documents including the assessment quiz click here