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Cross-post: As a Neurosurgeon, I See the Devastating Toll of the Raised Border Wall

By Cross Post, Spine Care, TraumaNo Comments

From time to time on Neurosurgery Blog, you will see us cross-posting or linking to items from other places that may interest our readers. Today’s post originally appeared in the Los Angeles Times on April 13, titled “Opinion: As a San Diego neurosurgeon, I see the devastating toll of the raised border wall.” In the op-ed, Alexander Tenorio, MD, a neurological surgery resident at the University of California San Diego, poignantly discusses the horrific spinal cord and brain injuries caused by falls from the border wall.

Dr. Tenorio relays stories of patients coming to the emergency department with serious injuries, such as a 30-year-old male with an unstable spinal fracture after falling off the border wall. The patient had a severe spinal cord injury. Dr. Tenorio “walked over to the trauma unit and saw the terrified young man, lying immobile with a collar supporting his neck. Instead of concerned family, he was surrounded by Border Patrol officers.”

Since the height of the border wall in San Diego was raised in 2019, there have been a record number of traumatic spinal injuries sustained in border falls. Dr. Tenorio can attest to the unnecessary human suffering the higher wall imposes on people. As the son of Mexican immigrants who crossed the same border in the 1980s when fleeing violent threats in their hometown, Dr. Tenorio understands that his patient’s life story could easily have been his or his parents’.

Dr. Tenorio concludes the op-ed urging political leaders to halt the planned border wall extensions and provide greater resources for hospitals serving border regions.

Click here to read the op-ed.

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