CETRI's fundamental goal is to help survivors of electrical shock injury achieve successful recovery following electrical shock injury. It is well established now that the extent of disability resulting from electrical shock can not be judge by the size of the skin contact burn. Because nerves and muscles in the current path can be instantly damaged by electrical shock current. Often recovery from nerve and muscle injury appears to be the most challenging barrier to rehabilitation.
The human nervous system, both peripheral and central, is a highly interconnected system which maintains the body's posture, balance and coordination. Injury to a part of the nervous system commonly results in generalized manifestations, even in parts that seem functionally independent. Disruption of the body's balance and coordination can lead to persistent pain that can result in neuropsychological problems. Depending on the type of electrical injury, often patients will report impaired memory function, loss of skin sensation, tingling, pain, disturbed sleep patterns, and nerve damage.
CETRI's clinicians thoroughly test neuromuscular function in the patients referred for evaluation. If abnormalities exist, then high priority is placed on appropriate physical therapy to recovery neuromuscular coordination. As observed in survivors of non-electrical injuries, early and aggressive physical therapy intervention along with managing metabolic factors appears to produce the best results. Determining optimal rehabilitation strategies remains a priority for CETRI's research.