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Raising awareness about spasticity

What is Spasticity?

Spasticity is defined as the uncontrolled tightening or contracting of the muscles that is common in individuals with neurological conditions and affects over 12 million people throughout the world across a variety of conditions.


Conditions where individuals are affected by spasticity include.

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and many other conditions


Common symptoms of spasticity may vary across conditions, but can include:

• muscle tightness or stiffness in the arms or legs which may make it more difficult for a person to move or perform certain activities • uncontrolled tightening or contracting of the muscles which can be very painful • the severity of the symptoms will vary from person to person


Treatment for spasticity:

Although there is no cure for spasticity, there are a number of treatments which may improve the lives of individuals living with spasticity across conditions states. These treatment options include: physical and/or occupational therapy, as well as medication and surgical options. Please go to the condition specific pages to learn more about what treatments for spasticity are commonly used for you or your loved ones.

View this infographic for more background on how spasticity impacts individuals across a range of conditions including cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis, traumatic brain injury, and spinal cord injury and stroke.

View as Infographic

In order to build a community of support for those whose lives are affected by spasticity, five patient advocacy organizations have come together to form The Spasticity Alliance. Together, the Spasticity Alliance aims to raise awareness about spasticity, empower people living with spasticity, and serve as a resource hub for information about spasticity, condition management, and treatment.

You are not alone in your journey with spasticity. There are many people who are traveling this path alongside you; care partners, physicians, others with spasticity. Learn about them and their stories. Share your own story with the people in your life who care about your health and wellbeing. There is great power in sharing your story.

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Road To A New Normal

On January 21, 2010, I was 34 years old when I was injured in a serious car accident with a drunk driver. I was alert and responsive at the scene of the accident but taken to St. Francis Hospital in Poughkeepsie, NY for treatment of a broken nose and finger.

In some cases, the surgeon will use additional surgical instrumentation in the front for stability. This is usually a plate and screws in the front of the spine. If support is also needed from the back of the spine, a series of screws and rods may be used. This is called a posterior instrumentation fusion and helps to achieve a posterior fusion in addition to an interbody fusion.

Posterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion (PLIF)

The Posterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion may be performed to treat the following conditions:

The procedure can be performed through a traditional open incision or a minimally invasive procedure depending on the patient and the condition to be treated. Posterior lumbar interbody fusion is performed under general anesthesia, meaning the patient goes to sleep. During the surgery the patient lies face down on a special surgical bed. The procedure is performed through an incision on the back. The length of the incision depends on how many levels are being treated.

Once the surgeon safely creates a window to see the spine, the lamina is removed in a laminectomy. This allows visualization of the nerve roots. The facet joints may also be cut away to also give the nerve roots more room. The nerve roots are carefully moved to either side so that the disc space can be accessed from both sides. Pedicle screws are inserted into the bone to allow for fixation. A rod is placed through the screws. This provides more stability for the fusion to heal and help realign the spine to the proper curvature.

The damaged disc is partially removed with surgical tools. This approach does not allow as much of the disc to be removed as in a front or side approach. Once the disc space has been cleared out, the surgeon prepares the bony surfaces for a fusion. An implant filled with bone graft is placed in the now empty disc space between the two vertebral bodies. Bone graft inside the disc space will then go on to fuse, healing the two bones together in this area. Once the interbody implant is placed, screws and rods are fixed to provide compressive forces for optimal fusion. Additional bone graft material is also placed along the back of the spine, providing an additional area for spine fusion to occur. If the fusion is successful, the vertebrae will move as one unit. This reduces future problems at this spinal segment. If the bones do not fuse as planned this is called a nonunion, or pseudarthrosis.

Any spine surgery has surgical risks involved. You need to discuss these with your surgeon at your pre-operative appointment.Read about Preparing for Spine Surgery and General Complications from Spine Surgery .

Bone Grafting

There are multiple options for bone graft material for spinal fusion. Surgeons at the Virginia Spine Institute may use your own locally harvested bone, called autograft bone. This may come from a combination of bone from the area of the spine being operated on or from your hip bone. Bone grafting can also come from donated and prepared bone, called allograft bone. Read more about how bone grafting is used as a surgical innovation.

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Principles are ways of successfully dealing with reality to get what you want out

an ultra mini-series adventure

Whatever success I’ve had in life hasn’t been because of anything unique about me—it’s because of principles that I believe anyone can adopt. I created this animated series to share them with you.

Created and Narrated by Ray Dalio

Rather than thinking, ‘I’m right.’ I started to ask myself, ‘How do I know I’m right?’”

Watch the full TED talk



Ray Dalio, one of the world’s most successful investors and entrepreneurs, shares the unconventional principles that helped him create unique results in life and business—and which any person or organization can adopt to better achieve their goals. Dalio’s original has been downloaded over three million times, and this expanded and revised edition is the first version available inprint.

Bill Gates

Mike Bloomberg

Arianna Huffington

Mark Cuban

Mark Benioff

Jamie Dimon

Reed Hastings

Tony Robbins

Adam Grant

Andrew Ross Sorkin

What's Inside

Two Books in One

Book One

Life Principles

The first book tells the story of Dalio’s career and explains his overarching approach to life using principles that affect everything he does—most importantly, how he pursues meaningful work and meaningfulrelationships.

Book Two

Work Principles

The second book explains the unusual way Dalio ran Bridgewater Associates for over 40 years, and how the firm’s unique approach to working together led to its uniqueresults.

Preview the Audiobook

About The Author

Ray Dalio

In 1975, Ray Dalio founded an investment firm, Bridgewater Associates, out of his two-bedroom apartment in New York City. Over forty years later, Bridgewater has grown into the fifth most important private company in the United States, according to magazine, and Dalio himself has been named to magazine’s list of the 100 most influential people in the world. Along the way, Dalio discovered a set of unique principles that have led to Bridgewater’s exceptionally effective culture, which he describes as “an idea meritocracy that strives to achieve meaningful work and meaningful relationships through radical transparency.” It is these principles, and not anything special about Dalio—who grew up an ordinary kid in a middle-class Long Island neighborhood—that he believes are the reason behind his success.

Due to high demand, Principles is currently unavailable at a number of booksellers. We apologize for the inconvenience. To get your copy of Principles now, visit one of the other retailers or reserve your copy with your favorite bookseller to be near the top of their shipping list.


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