Fourth & Long: The Kent Waldrop Story

Kent Waldrep, Author, Susan Malone, Author
Kent Waldrep, Author, Susan Malone, Author Crossroad Publishing Company $19.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-8245-1508-9
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Playing in a football game between Texas Christian and Alabama in 1975, Waldrep sustained a spinal cord injury that left him paralyzed. He began extensive therapy, but the American medical profession agreed that nothing could be done for him, their gospel being that any paralysis that lasts for three to six months after spinal cord injury is permanent. But after learning that the Soviet medical profession did not agree, Waldrep spent a month in the former Leningrad, making some progress. Back in the U.S., he established a foundation to raise funds for research on spinal cord injuries. That foundation was merged with a larger group, and subsequently Waldrep was all but ousted from it; he established a second foundation and has seen the development of fruitful nerve-regeneration research, nerve grafting and the use of steroids (this last pioneered by the Russians), all of which have combined to change the view of the AMA. He and freelance journalist Malone grippingly depict not only the patient's but also his loved ones' ordeals in adjusting to paralysis. 40,000 first printing. (Sept.)
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