March 9, 2023

MI-SCIMS Presents: A Conversation on Women’s Health and SCI

6:30 pm

Online on Zoom. Watch the YouTube video here.

In honor of Women’s History Month, the Michigan Spinal Cord Injury Model System (MI-SCIMS) hosted Michigan Medicine experts leading an interactive conversation on women’s reproductive health and SCI. This event included the participation of women with SCI sharing their perspective and was simultaneously hosted on Zoom and Facebook Live.


Megan Christ and her kids

Megan Christ, MSPO, CPO
Residency Program Director
University of Michigan Orthotics and Prosthetics Center

Megan Christ is a certified prosthetist and orthotist in PM&R and director of the O&P resident training program. She sustained a C7 spinal cord injury seven years ago due to a porch collapse and now uses a power wheelchair for mobility. After many years of providing care, she became a patient herself working with physical and occupational therapy at U of M PM&R and Walk the Line Recovery Therapy. She lives in Ann Arbor with her husband Steven and her two kids Lucy (3) and Logan (1). 


Tameka Citchen-Spruce with her oldest child

Tameka Citchen-Spruce
Co-Lead Director 
Michigan Disability Rights Coalition

Tameka Citchen-Spruce has been advocating and raising awareness for over 15 years for affordable, accessible housing and health equity, as well as fighting against voting oppression and racial and gender injustices toward people with disabilities. A talented filmmaker, Ms. Citchen-Spruce recently joined the 2023 class of Unlock Her Potential, a mentorship program for women of color. W. Kamau Bell, stand-up comedian and the host and executive producer of the Emmy Award-winning CNN docuseries United Shades of America with W. Kamau Bell, will serve as her mentor. Ms. Citchen-Spruce serves on the board of Warriors of Wheels of Metropolitan Detroit and is a Program Leader and Racial Justice Specialist for the Leadership Engagement and Advocacy Development program for the Michigan Disability Rights Coalition. Ms. Citchen-Spruce is a recipient of the Cookie Gant Spirit Award.


Claire Kalpakjian

Claire Kalpakjian, PhD, MS
Associate Professor of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Associate Chair for Research
Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Michigan Medicine

Dr. Kalpakjian is a biopsychosocial scientist and clinical and rehabilitation psychologist by training with 30 years of clinical and research experience with diverse populations of persons with disabilities resulting from injury, illness, or by congenital causes. Dr. Kalpakjian’s program of research focuses on the reproductive health of women with physical disabilities to promote independence, self-advocacy, and health care equity.

Read Dr. Kalpakjian’s full bio here.


Dr. Gianna Rodriguez

Gianna Rodriguez, MD
Spinal Cord Injury Fellowship Program Director
Associate Spinal Cord Injury Program Director
Medical Director, Wheelchair Seating Services
PMR Lead, DF Comprehensive Wound Care Program
PMR Lead, Michigan Bowel Control Program
PMR Lead, Adult Assisted Ventilation Program
Clinical Professor, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation

Dr. Rodriguez is Medical Director of the Wheelchair Seating Clinic and PM&R Administrator in the Michigan Bowel Control Clinic and the Wound Care Clinic. She also serves as Co-PI for MI-SCIMS. She has written and collaborated on several research publications and written chapters on SCI sequelae in premier journals and textbooks in PM&R.  Dr. Rodriguez has been recognized for her teaching of trainees with the Silver Crutch award. 

Read Dr. Rodriguez's full bio here


The contents of this event were developed under a grant from the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR grant number 90SIMS0018).  NIDILRR is a Center within the Administration for Community Living (ACL), Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).  The contents of this event do not necessarily represent the policy of NIDILRR, ACL, or HHS, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government.