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10 year old had a hard hit on head. Feeling dizzy, threw up, sick in stomach. Is it safe to fly ?

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Orthopaedic Surgeon
Practicing since : 2011
Answered : 4584 Questions
At lunch on monday my ten year old son hit heads hard with another boy while playing soccer. He went to the nurses office, but returned to class and was dizzy until bed time. On tuesday after playing baseball, he threw up after an intense game. On wednesday night, he felt sick to the stomach, but did not throw up. It is early thursday morning now, and his Sacramento class field trip is today. I am worried about him flying if there is any internal bleeding in his brain and I am wishing we had done a catscan, but we did not. Is it safe for him to fly?
Posted Tue, 12 Jun 2012 in Head Injuries
Answered by Dr. Aashish Raghu 43 minutes later

Thanks for the query.

Has your son lost consciousness or memory after the head injury ?

Is there any weakness of any part of his body ?

Any difficulty in maintaining balance while standing and walking ?

Your son may have sustained a mid concussion which is why he was nauseous and dizzy. Possibility of bleed in the brain needs to be ruled out by a CT Scan.

Generally there is no contraindication to flying for people with head injury as in a concussion. He may experience occasional headaches due to the pressurized cabin in the airplane which may be aggravated during turbulence.

It is advisable to get the CT Scan done if his condition is deteriorating.

It is advisable that your son not stress himself by reading, playing games etc. on the plane because these can aggravate the headaches. He may require pain killers to numb the headache, like Acetaminopen or Ibuprofen under medical supervision.

Do keep a watch on his condition and if you feel he is getting worse, he will require immediate CT scan and intervention. If he is stable, he may be allowed to fly.

I hope I have answered your query. I will be available to answer your follow up queries.

Wishing speedy recovery.


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