What is Complete Concussion Management?

Complete Concussion Management is a network of trained multidisciplinary healthcare practitioners that collaborate with physicians to co-manage concussion injuries, helping patients and athletes safely return to learn, work and play.

What is a Concussion?

A concussion is caused by acceleration or deceleration of the brain, following a significant impact to the head or elsewhere on the body. One common misconception is that someone must be hit in the head to cause a concussion; however, a significant enough hit to the body may cause a whiplash effect and result in enough force to the brain to cause a concussion.

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What Are the Symptoms of a Concussion?

A concussion causes the brain cells to become excited initially, followed by an extreme drop in energy. This may result in any of the following symptoms:

  • Loss of consciousness (more than 90% of concussions do not result in loss of consciousness)
  • Headache or pressure in the head
  • Neck pain or whiplash
  • Dizziness or vertigo
  • Nausea and/or vomiting
  • Blurred or distorted vision
  • Balance problems
  • Feeling tired, fatigue, slowed down, drowsy or having no energy
  • Feeling “foggy” or not thinking clearly
  • Not feeling right or feeling off
  • More emotional
  • Feeling sad, upset or angry
  • Nervousness or anxiety
  • Sensitivity to light or noise
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Difficulty reading or working at a computer
  • Difficulty remembering or concentrating
  • Confusion
  • Difficulty falling asleep
  • Sleeping more or sleeping less
  • Irritability

Visual Signs of a Concussion May Include:

  • Loss of consciousness
  • Lying motionless on the field or ice
  • Disorientation or inability to respond to questions
  • Blank or vacant stare
  • Balance, slowed movement, stumbling or incoordination
  • Clutching head
  • Slow to get up after a hit to the head or body

If you experience any one of these symptoms following a significant impact to the head or body, then you should have a high suspicion of concussion. When in doubt, sit them out!

Treatment Options for Concussions

During the early stages following injury, relative physical and cognitive rest is recommended for 24 to 48 hours; however, these decisions are made on a case-by-case basis. Following a short period of rest, treatment and rehabilitation may include a gradual increase in mental and physical activity. If symptoms persist beyond 10 days, exercise therapy, manual therapy of the neck, diet and nutritional interventions, and vestibular and visual rehabilitation are proven to be effective treatment and rehabilitation options.

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Meet Our Concussion Management Expert

Elizabeth Scarth