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What are the symptoms of concussion in head?

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Posted on Wed, 20 May 2015
Question: how can i tell if i have a head concussion? fell out of bed hitting right temple forhead. some brusing
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Answered by Dr. Dariush Saghafi (38 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
You can't but a trained doctor can

Detailed Answer:
Good afternoon. I am a neurologist and take care of Concussion or Traumatic Brain Injury patients (TBI) all the time in my practice and at the hospital.

It is never recommended and most of the time not even entirely possible for an individual to accurately judge the merits of having or not having suffered a concussion or traumatic brain injury.

Allow to summarize the actual definition that is in use for how we evaluate a person to determine whether or not they've suffered a concussion of the brain:

A traumatically induced structural injury and/or physiological disruption of brain function as a result of an external force that is indicated by new onset or worsening of at least one of the following clinical signs, immediately following the event:

We must answer the following questions about the patient:

1. Did they suffer any period of loss of or a decreased level of consciousness (LOC)....this is fairly straight forward and almost anybody who's ever played football and gotten their "bells rung" know what this is all about. If the person is knocked out cold then, it's pretty obvious. If the person is very lethargic, sleepy, and difficult to arouse after being struck...then, this should be obvious. See below, however, for more subtle signs of levels of conciousness and levels of alertness because you may be surprised to see what still makes it in to the real of concussion.

2. Did the person suffer any loss of memory for events immediately before or after the injury (post-traumatic amnesia)? In other words, how well is the person able to tell us the details of what happened immediately before and after the impact or injury? If details are just not there or very fuzzy/uncertain then, we assume the presence of PTA.

3. Any alteration in mental state at the time of the injury (confusion, disorientation, slowed thinking, etc.) (Alteration of consciousness/mental state)...that could be something as simple as feeling "dazed" or "out of it" even if for only a few seconds.

4. Are there neurological deficits (weakness, loss of balance, change in vision, praxis, paresis/plegia, sensory loss, aphasia, etc.) that may or may not be temporary?

5. Is there an intracranial lesion or obvious brain injury that can be appreciated either by a scan or other means?

Now, one other thing. How do we definte an EXTERNAL FORCE?

It could be any of the following: the head being struck by an object, the head striking an object, the brain undergoing an acceleration/deceleration movement without direct external trauma to the head, a foreign body penetrating the brain, forces generated from events such as a blast or explosion, or other forces yet to be defined.

Finally, what I have listed above are the strict criteria defining the event of a TBI that we as neurologists and trauma specialists embrace. Not all individuals exposed to an external force will sustain a TBI, but any person who has a history of such an event with immediate manifestation of any of the above signs and symptoms can be said to have had a TBI or concussion.

You must understand though that what I said initially is VERY IMPORTANT.....The individual affected should never be the one to evaluate themselves since they cannot possibly go through all the steps and answer all the appropriate questions that a professional would cover to make such a determination. The truth is...in the end....it becomes the judgement call of the examining physician when answering some of the questions. Some people will have all the criteria described above while most will have some, and some may only have exactly 1 criteria filled and still be considered CONCUSSION. That's why a professional is needed to make the call and not the individual themselves.

So at the end of the day....a concussion is best summarized from a clinical perspective by an examiner being able to answer the following question:

Did an external force cause this person's brain to stop functioning? If any of the above criteria that I mentioned are present then, the answer to the question is a likely YES.

I hope this answer satisfactorily addresses your question and if so I'd appreciate the favor of a HIGH STAR RATING with some written feedback.

Also, in case there are no further comments or questions may I ask that you CLOSE THE QUERY on your end so this question can be transacted and archived for further reference by colleagues as necessary? You may always stay in touch directly with me by writing future questions to:

bit.ly/drdariushsaghafi

Please keep me informed as to the outcome of your situation. All the best.

The query has required a total of 30 minutes of physician specific time to read, research, and compile a return envoy to the patient.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Answered by
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Dr. Dariush Saghafi

Neurologist

Practicing since :1988

Answered : 2473 Questions

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What are the symptoms of concussion in head?

Brief Answer: You can't but a trained doctor can Detailed Answer: Good afternoon. I am a neurologist and take care of Concussion or Traumatic Brain Injury patients (TBI) all the time in my practice and at the hospital. It is never recommended and most of the time not even entirely possible for an individual to accurately judge the merits of having or not having suffered a concussion or traumatic brain injury. Allow to summarize the actual definition that is in use for how we evaluate a person to determine whether or not they've suffered a concussion of the brain: A traumatically induced structural injury and/or physiological disruption of brain function as a result of an external force that is indicated by new onset or worsening of at least one of the following clinical signs, immediately following the event: We must answer the following questions about the patient: 1. Did they suffer any period of loss of or a decreased level of consciousness (LOC)....this is fairly straight forward and almost anybody who's ever played football and gotten their "bells rung" know what this is all about. If the person is knocked out cold then, it's pretty obvious. If the person is very lethargic, sleepy, and difficult to arouse after being struck...then, this should be obvious. See below, however, for more subtle signs of levels of conciousness and levels of alertness because you may be surprised to see what still makes it in to the real of concussion. 2. Did the person suffer any loss of memory for events immediately before or after the injury (post-traumatic amnesia)? In other words, how well is the person able to tell us the details of what happened immediately before and after the impact or injury? If details are just not there or very fuzzy/uncertain then, we assume the presence of PTA. 3. Any alteration in mental state at the time of the injury (confusion, disorientation, slowed thinking, etc.) (Alteration of consciousness/mental state)...that could be something as simple as feeling "dazed" or "out of it" even if for only a few seconds. 4. Are there neurological deficits (weakness, loss of balance, change in vision, praxis, paresis/plegia, sensory loss, aphasia, etc.) that may or may not be temporary? 5. Is there an intracranial lesion or obvious brain injury that can be appreciated either by a scan or other means? Now, one other thing. How do we definte an EXTERNAL FORCE? It could be any of the following: the head being struck by an object, the head striking an object, the brain undergoing an acceleration/deceleration movement without direct external trauma to the head, a foreign body penetrating the brain, forces generated from events such as a blast or explosion, or other forces yet to be defined. Finally, what I have listed above are the strict criteria defining the event of a TBI that we as neurologists and trauma specialists embrace. Not all individuals exposed to an external force will sustain a TBI, but any person who has a history of such an event with immediate manifestation of any of the above signs and symptoms can be said to have had a TBI or concussion. You must understand though that what I said initially is VERY IMPORTANT.....The individual affected should never be the one to evaluate themselves since they cannot possibly go through all the steps and answer all the appropriate questions that a professional would cover to make such a determination. The truth is...in the end....it becomes the judgement call of the examining physician when answering some of the questions. Some people will have all the criteria described above while most will have some, and some may only have exactly 1 criteria filled and still be considered CONCUSSION. That's why a professional is needed to make the call and not the individual themselves. So at the end of the day....a concussion is best summarized from a clinical perspective by an examiner being able to answer the following question: Did an external force cause this person's brain to stop functioning? If any of the above criteria that I mentioned are present then, the answer to the question is a likely YES. I hope this answer satisfactorily addresses your question and if so I'd appreciate the favor of a HIGH STAR RATING with some written feedback. Also, in case there are no further comments or questions may I ask that you CLOSE THE QUERY on your end so this question can be transacted and archived for further reference by colleagues as necessary? You may always stay in touch directly with me by writing future questions to: bit.ly/drdariushsaghafi Please keep me informed as to the outcome of your situation. All the best. The query has required a total of 30 minutes of physician specific time to read, research, and compile a return envoy to the patient.