The Doctors: Janne Kouri Football Player Spinal Cord Injury & Therapy


The Doctors: Janne & Susan Relationship

Janne Kouri was a star on the Georgetown University football team when he met Susan. Love grew between them, until the day they went to the beach and Janne went to dive under a wave and ended up becoming severely injured. At the hospital, they learned he had a fracture at his C5 and C6 vertebrae. Susan said Janne couldn’t even talk to her for four to five weeks. Janne became paralyzed from the shoulders down.

The Doctors: Janne Kouri Football Player Spinal Cord Injury & Therapy

Janne injured his spine while diving under a wave at the beach, something that could happen to any of us. It’s a reminder to always be aware of your surroundings.


Janne told her she didn’t have to stay with him. But Susan said that she fell in love with his mind and his heart. She searched the country for the top spinal surgeons, looking for something to help Janne. She couldn’t believe that what had been done for Janne was the best medicine could do.

Finally, she found a doctor who could help him.

The Drs: Janne Kouri Spinal Cord Injury

Dr. Travis Stork explained Janne’s injury. He said that where the fracture occurs along the spine determines the loss of function. There are seven cervical vertebrae along the spine. The further down the injury, the greater the loss of function. Janne’s injury was an incomplete fracture, which allowed him a little bit of function. He was able to move his arms when he was injured.


At the time, the prognosis was that he would never walk again.

The Doctors: Janne’s Spinal Therapy Success

Janne was able to stand again. And someday, he may even be able to walk again, thanks to a new therapy. Locomotor training is where a patient is suspended over a treadmill with a harness. A trainer helps move the legs. This allows a new neural pattern to be learned and it strengthens the core.

This therapy helps anyone with a spinal cord injury, a stroke and a neural trauma.

The Drs TV: Janne and Susan Non-Profit

Janne and Susan started a non-profit organization to help move therapies like locomotor training to other areas of the country, so more people could benefit. Janne had to go to Louisville, Kentucky for his therapy from Los Angeles. This organization aims to help as many people as possible with physical disabilities and paralysis.

The Doctors: Janne Proposes To Susan

Janne proposed to Susan on The Doctors. Apparently, he once tried to propose to her in the hospital, but he was under a lot of medication and the proposal was a bit loopy. This time around, Janne was elegant, asking her if she still wanted to spend the rest of her life with him, knowing what they’d been through the last six years, and Susan said yes.


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