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Domestic Violence and Abuse

Q&A About Concussion Symptoms — The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (2 of 8)


>>HOW DO I KNOW IF
I HAVE A CONCUSSION?>>UNFORTUNATELY, WE KNOW
THAT CONCUSSIONS OCCUR MORE IN THE PEDIATRIC AND
ADOLESCENT POPULATION THAN IN ANY OTHER POPULATION. A CONCUSSION OCCURS WHEN
THERE’S A HIT TO THE HEAD FOLLOWED BY A DISTURBANCE
IN THE WAY THE BRAIN WORKS. SO IF YOUR CHILD
SUSTAINS A CONCUSSION, IT’S IMPORTANT THAT THEY
REST AND SEE A MEDICAL CARE PROVIDER.>>SO WHAT ARE THE
SIGNS OF A CONCUSSION, AND WHEN SHOULD I
REALLY BE CONCERNED?>>SO I SAY A CONCUSSION
IS LIKE A SNOWFLAKE. NO TWO ARE THE SAME.>>IT’S IMPORTANT FOR THE
PHYSICIAN TO PULL THE ENTIRE STORY TOGETHER
WITH THE INJURY, THE SYMPTOMS THAT
DEVELOPED AFTER THE INJURY, AND THEN THEIR PHYSICAL EXAM
AND HOW YOUR CHILD LOOKS RIGHT NOW. ONLY 10 TO 20 PERCENT OF
CONCUSSIONS RESULT IN LOSS OF CONSCIOUSNESS. SO IF YOU LOSE
CONSCIOUSNESS, YOU PROBABLY
HAVE A CONCUSSION. BUT EVEN IF YOU DON’T
LOSE CONSCIOUSNESS, YOU MAY STILL
HAVE A CONCUSSION.>>SYMPTOMS OF A CONCUSSION
INCLUDE PHYSICAL SYMPTOMS SUCH AS HEADACHE,
NAUSEA, VOMITING, DIZZINESS, TOTAL
BODY BEING TIRED, LIKE FATIGUE — ALSO,
COGNITIVE SYMPTOMS SUCH AS DIFFICULTY REMEMBERING,
DIFFICULTY CONCENTRATING, OR FEELING MENTALLY FOGGY. EMOTIONAL SYMPTOMS ARE
COMMON IN A SMALL PERCENTAGE OF CONCUSSIONS, AND THESE
CAN INCLUDE NERVOUSNESS, ANXIETY OR PERSEVERATION.>>IT’S IMPORTANT TO WATCH
YOUR CHILD THE FIRST FEW HOURS AFTER AN INJURY
TO MAKE SURE THEY’RE NOT GETTING SUFFICIENTLY
WORSE THAT IT WOULD MAKE YOU WARRANT A VISIT TO
THE EMERGENCY ROOM.>>SO IF THE CHILD HAS
SUSTAINED A HEAD INJURY, AND WE’RE UNCLEAR IF THERE’S
BEEN A CONCUSSION OR NOT, THEN A PARENT SHOULD CONTACT
THEIR PRIMARY CARE DOCTOR AND REVIEW THE
SYMPTOMS OF CONCUSSION. IN A SMALL SUBSET
OF HEAD INJURIES, THEY MAY HAVE SYMPTOMS THAT
ARE MORE THAN WHAT WE WOULD CONSIDER A CONCUSSION,
AND THOSE PROBABLY REQUIRE URGENT MEDICAL
EVALUATION, EITHER 911 OR AN EMERGENCY ROOM. THOSE SYMPTOMS WOULD
INCLUDE SLURRED SPEECH, PERSISTENT VOMITING,
MENTAL CONFUSION, AND SYMPTOMS THAT ARE
GETTING WORSE WITH TIME. BY RECOGNIZING THE SIGNS
OF CONCUSSION EARLY IN THE PROCESS, WE CAN
START CARE, WHICH IS REST. THIS USUALLY LEADS TO
BETTER LONG-TERM OUTCOMES, AND SO EARLY RECOGNITION
OF CONCUSSION HELPS WITH RECOVERY.

Cesar Sullivan

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