AOSpine Knowledge Forum SCI

The AOSpine KF Spinal Cord Injury is an international working group composed of 7 steering committee members who meet on a regular basis to discuss research, assess the best evidence for current practices, and formulate clinical studies in the domain of spinal cord injury. It is charged with conducting clinical research, developing AOSpine classifications, guidelines, and outcome measures.



Steering Committee

Michael Fehlings
University of Toronto
Toronto, ON, Canada

Brian Kwon
University of British Columbia
Vancouver, BC, Canada

Shekar Kurpad
Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin
Milwaukee, WI, USA

James Harrop
Thomas Jefferson University
Philadelphia, PA, USA 

Bizhan Aarabi
University of Maryland
Baltimore, MD, USA 

Robert Grossman
The Methodist Hospital
Houston, TX, USA

Mark Kotter
University of Cambridge
Cambridge, UK


Project overview

​Status: Executing ​ ​ ​ ​
​Project Title ​Investigator(s) ​Aim Outcomes
RISCIS ​A multi-center, randomized, placebo-controlled, doubleblinded, trial of efficacy and safety of Riluzole in acute spinal cord injury ​PI: Michael Fehlings

To evaluate efficacy and safety of Riluzole in the treatment of patients with acute spinal cord injury. The primary objective is to evaluate the superiority of Riluzole as compared to placebo, in improving motor outcomes as measured by ASIA Motor Score at 6 months follow-up, in patients with acute traumatic spinal cord injury, presenting to hospital less than 12 hours after injury.
Remark: Co-sponsored by AOSpine North America, US Department of Defense, Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation, Ontario Neurotrauma Foundation, Rick Hansen Institute.

Publication summary

SCI Database Merge ​Spinal Cord Injury Database Merge: Combining data of two existing registries (NACTN and STASCIS)

​PI: Michael Fehlings

To combine two existing databases on patients with spinal cord injuries treated surgically (NACTN and STASCIS) and to assess descriptive data on injury/surgery details, as well as ASIA score and reported complications.

Status: Completed
​Project Title ​Investigator(s) ​Aim Outcomes
​​SCI Guidelines ​Development of an evidence-based clinical guideline for the treatment of acute spinal cord injury ​PI: Michael Fehlings ​A set of systematic reviews will serve as the basis of the current state of the field.  Based on this knowledge, a global team of clinical experts in SCI will then go through the rigorous process of developing evidence-based clinical guidelines for the treatment of acute spinal cord injury. Injury specific to the five selected topics:
  • Use of methylprednisolone
  • Timing of decompression
  • Role and timing of magnetic resonance imaging
  • Type and timing of anticoagulation
  • Type and timing of rehabilitation Remark: Co-sponsored by AOSpine North America

Publication summary 

Guidelines Special Issue