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Post-Concussion Syndrome

Definition


Disease: Post-Concussion Syndrome Post-Concussion Syndrome
Category: Neurological diseases
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Disease Definition:

Post-concussion syndrome is a complex disorder. The term “concussion” means having a mild traumatic brain injury often taking place right after a blow to the head.

 A combination of post-concussion symptoms may last for weeks and sometimes even months after the injury resulted in the concussion, such as headaches and dizziness. Losing consciousness doesn’t mean having a concussion or post-concussion syndrome, actually the risk of post-concussion syndrome doesn’t seem to be related to the severity of the main injury.

Symptoms of post-concussion syndrome mostly take place within the first 7 to 10 days and disappear within 3 months, although they could remain for a year or more. Treatment for post-concussion syndrome focuses on easing certain symptoms.

Work Group:


Prepared by: Scientific Section

Symptoms, Causes

Symptoms:

Symptoms of post-concussion vary, and they include:

 

 

  • Fatigue
  • Insomnia
  • Headaches
  • Noise and light sensitivity
  • Irritability
  • Dizziness
  • Loss of concentration and memory
  • Anxiety
  •  

Headaches that occur after a concussion could differ and might feel like migraines, cluster headaches or mostly tension-type headaches which may be due to a neck injury that took place simultaneously with the head injury. Sometimes, people have either behavioral or emotional changes following a mild traumatic brain injury. Family members might be able to tell whether the person in question has become more irritable, suspicious, stubborn or argumentative.


When one has a severe injury that might result in confusion or amnesia, consulting a doctor might be necessary even if the person in question didn’t lose their consciousness. When concussion occurs when playing a sport, it would be wise not to go back to the game and instead seek medical care in order to prevent the injury from getting worse.

Causes:

It is considered that symptoms of post-concussion might be the outcome of a structural damage to the brain or disruption of neurotransmitter systems, caused from the impact that resulted in the concussion. When other times it is considered to be associated with psychological factors, particularly when headache, dizziness and sleep problems tend to be the most common symptoms resembling to those usually experienced by people diagnosed with depression, anxiety or post-traumatic stress disorder. Mostly, both physiological effects of brain trauma and emotional responses to these effects could work in the growth of symptoms.
The causes behind the growth of remaining post-concussion symptoms after a concussion are unknown. There has been no proven correlation between the severity of the injury and the likelihood of developing persistent post-concussion symptoms.

Post-concussion syndrome includes the following risk factors:


Being older: As a person ages the risk of growing post-concussion syndrome raises.
Being female: Men are less likely to get affected by post-concussion syndrome, in general, since men don’t usually seek medical attention as women do when experiencing symptoms.
A concussion associated with a car collision, fall or assault: Concussions associated with sports tend to be less likely to cause post-concussion syndrome.

Complications

Complications:

None

Treatments:

Post-concussion syndrome doesn’t have any particular treatment. Instead, each symptom is treated on its own. Every person has certain kinds of symptoms varying in frequency.


Headaches
When headaches are related to post-concussion syndrome, medications typically used for migraines or tension headaches tend to be more effective, such as antidepressants. Using over-the-counter and prescription pain relievers more than required for a long period of time might lead to persistent post-concussion headaches.
Physical therapy might be effective in relieving tension-type headache symptoms.


Memory and thinking problems
there aren’t any medications that are presently recommended, especially for the treatment of cognitive problems following mild traumatic brain injury. Most cognitive problems disappear on their own in the weeks to months after the injury. Brief, concentrated rehabilitation offering individualized training in the way of using a pocket calendar, electronic organizer or other techniques to work around memory deficits is usually helpful.


Depression and anxiety
When having recent or increasing depression or anxiety following a concussion, talking to a psychologist or psychiatrist experienced in working with people who have had brain injury. Additionally, medications fighting against anxiety or depression might be prescribed. Post-concussion syndrome results in symptoms that usually get better after the affected person is informed about the underlying reasons and that they would improve over time. Education about the disorder could ease a person’s fear and help offer peace of mind.

Prognosis:

Not Available

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