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Program & Goals

The department of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation offers comprehensive care to individuals recovering from a spinal cord injury with the goal of maximizing function and quality of life.

Led by SCI Board Certified, Dr. Christine Cleveland, MD, we offer a multidisciplinary inpatient program tailored for our SCI patients with therapists who specialize in their care. We privide resource materials that include paraplegic and tetraplegic specific booklets for patients to learn from, refer back to, and take notes in for future reference. Weekly educational classes are available for patients and their families/caregivers to learn more about various topics related to SCI that include: anatomy and physiology, bowel and bladder management, and complications after an SCI.

In addition to physical therapists, occupational therapists, and speech-language pathologists providers, we also provide recreational therapists who are invaluable for community planning and reintegration.

In the outpatient setting, we have physical and occupational therapists who have a specialized interest in the SCI population and experience working with these patients. In addition to our therapists, we have a great relationship with various equipment vendors and orthotics providers who can assist patients with equipment needs.

Integrated Care Model

Our physiatrists develop and oversee an individualized care plan for each patient which is implemented by our team of rehabilitation professionals. Our services are available to patients with a spinal cord injury during acute hospitalization at UNC Hospitals, at the UNC Health Care Rehabilitation Center or our sub-acute rehabilitation at UNC-Rex.

We continue rehabilitation care, education, research and advocacy in the UNC PM&R Outpatient Clinic and through our community outreach programs.

Our faculty members also provide bowel and bladder management, spasticity management, nerve conduction studies, electromyography studies (EMGs), as well as neuropsychological and psychological evaluation and treatment.

PM&R Faculty Sub-specializing in Spinal Cord Injury (SCI)


Christine Cleveland, MD


We recommend the A-Z index of general health topics from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to learn more about specific conditions and treatments.

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