What is a concussion?
A concussion, or mild traumatic brain injury, is the most common type of brain injury that temporarily disrupts brain function. It is caused by a direct or indirect blow to the head that jolts the brain hard enough to disrupt its normal metabolic functioning. The brain's movement can stretch or damage brain cells. This creates an "energy crisis" as the brain needs more fuel to heal and recover. The symptoms of a concussion are a sign of the brain's energy crisis and its efforts to heal.
When managed properly, most individuals of all ages recover from a concussion within a few weeks. However, some individuals take much longer to recover, either because of persistent symptoms that require more specialized evaluation and management or because of pre-injury risk factors that worsen and prolong the effects of the concussion.
Signs & Symptoms
Our sports medicine experts manage symptoms by encouraging frequent brain breaks as individuals return to school, work and daily activities and recommending adjustments in the classroom, workplace and at home to better manage symptom triggers.
- Irritability or behavior changes
- Confusion or nervousness
- Nausea, dizziness or difficulty with coordination
- Sensitivity to light or noise
- Blurry or double vision
- Sleeping more or less
- Sluggishness, grogginess or fatigue
- Difficulty concentrating
- Feeling foggy or confused
Just as every patient and injury is unique, the treatment plan needs to be tailored to the individual symptoms and needs of each patient. During recovery, it is important to know that many people have a range of symptoms that affect them in different ways. Some symptoms may appear right away, while others may not be noticed for hours or even days after the injury. You may not realize you have problems until you try to do your usual activities again, which is why our treatment plan includes routine follow-up and care coordination with schools and teams, in addition to referrals as needed in order to expedite recovery.
Concussion Treatment Team
Concussions involve a variety of symptoms and parts of the body, and the effects are different for each individual. This makes it particularly difficult for any one medical or educational specialist to appropriately evaluate the injury effects of a concussion. Our concussion treatment teams bring together medical professionals who work collaboratively to provide interdisciplinary, evidence-based care to expedite an individuals return to school, work, and play as quickly and as safely as possible.