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Experiencing dizziness and headache few weeks after head injury. Any complication?

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Practicing since : 1991
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My adult daughter hit her head on the steering wheel of her vehicle in an auto accident three weeks ago. She was transported to hospital and released. No MRIs or Xrays. Now she is experiencing dizziness and headache in the area of the bump. Should she be immediately concerned or is this normal?
Posted Sun, 21 Apr 2013 in Head Injuries
Answered by Dr. Sumit Bhatti 35 minutes later

Thank you for your query.

1. Since three weeks have passed since her injury, the worst is over.

2. Dizziness and headache are common in severe concussions. Dizziness due to brain concussion is a feeling of imbalance, while dizziness due to ear and lower brain injury or concussion is rotatory spinning (true vertigo). Headaches may last for weeks or months. Was this injury in spite of wearing a seat belt? Were the air bags deployed?

3. Hitting the forehead on to s steering wheel sometimes also causes what is known as a coup injury or concussion to the brain on the front and a contre-coup injury at the back of the head. This happens because the brain floats within the skull in a fluid known as CerebroSpinal Fluid (CSF) and hence has an inertia in relation to the bony skull.

4. It will be better to get a Neurolgist's opinion who can examine her directly and advise medication for the headaches and dizziness. If her symptoms persist or become worse, the Neurologist may also get an MRI/CT Scan done.

I hope that I have answered your queries. If you have any further questions, I will be available to answer them.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Experiencing dizziness and headache few weeks after head injury. Any complication? 17 hours later
Thank you for your reply. Yes, she was wearing a seatbelt but the airbag did not deploy.
Answered by Dr. Sumit Bhatti 2 hours later

Thank you for writing back.

1. The seat belt must have reduced some part of the impact, hence there is less cause for worry.

2. There is no harm in getting a Neurologist's opinion. Medication for dizziness and headache can be started.

Wishing her a speedy recovery,

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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