Author Archive


teen boy and concerned mom at window

Is There a Connection Between Mild TBI and Mental Health Disorders in Adults and Children?

In a recent study, researchers at Kaiser Permanente found that risks for affective and behavioral disorders were significantly higher in the years post-injury for children and adolescents with a history of mTBI—especially for 10- to 13-year-olds. They emphasize the importance of regular interval screening for affective and behavioral disorders in children and adolescents who sustain a mild TBI. This post includes a slide presentation and Q & A with two of the researchers, Richard Delmonico, PhD, and Brian Theodore, PhD.

Slate Article

Concussion Alliance Co-Founders Interviewed for Slate Article

More and more journalists are writing about concussion, in many cases because they have had a concussion themselves or have friends or relatives who have experienced one. In March, 2024, Isobel Whitcomb interviewed Concussion Alliance co-founders Conor Gormally and Malayka Gormally for an article in Slate. It is concerning that bad medical advice (“just rest”) is still being given to concussion patients as is clear in Whitcomb’s story.

3 boys-after-football-game

Why I Am Not Surprised About the Latest CTE Research

Millions of children play contact and collision sports in the US, with high risks for head impacts. Repetitive hits can result in concussions or subconcussions without immediate evidence of neurologic injury. CTE is a brain disorder caused by repetitive hits to the brain from sports such as football and soccer. The latest study from Dr. Ann McKee’s brain lab at Boston University links CTE to child athletes who died before the age of 30.

The Atlantic & Bloomberg magazines

Concussion Care Highlighted in The Atlantic and Bloomberg News

I collaborated recently with Conor Gormally of Concussion Alliance to advocate for individualized and comprehensive concussion care in mainstream news stories with journalists who recounted personal stories of concussion.  Here’s what The Atlantic and Bloomberg published.

Two soccer players competing for ball

The 6th International Consensus Statement on Concussion in Sport–What’s New?

The Statement summarizes scientific research and provides some updated recommendations for athletes at risk for concussions.  But, it’s been mired in controversy regarding the strict criteria governing which research was included. Read Dr. Sandel’s insights into the process and conclusions.

UC Davis Health, Dept of Physical Medicine and Rehab

Patient-Centered Concussion Care

Presenting to the physical medicine and rehabilitation (PM&R) residents at the UC Davis School of Medicine sparked a lively exchange about patient-centered concussion care. Learn more about the challenges and possibilities for transforming concussion care.

Woman with eyes closed holding neck in pain

Post-Traumatic Headaches: Not Just One Type or Treatment

Headaches must be evaluated with a comprehensive history and physical examination. There are many options for treatment, but diagnosis has to be the first step.

3D illustration of person holding head in pain

Evaluating and Treating Headaches After Brain Injury

Headaches are extremely common after a traumatic brain injury, but there are various treatments that vary depending on the phenotype or cause.

3D x-ray of spine/neck

Check the Neck after a Brain Injury

Whiplash and cervical strain occurs when a person’s head and neck are forced back and forth, injuring soft tissues of the neck. They are common after brain injuries.

Close up of woman holding neck in pain

Three Alternative Treatment Modalities to Ease Brain Injury Associated Symptoms

Conventional treatments like medications may not help symptoms after a brain injury. Complementary or alternative treatments may help.

Book & Original Illustrations

Meet Dr. Sandel at the Book Signing Event on December 9

Join Dr. Sandel in Oakland on Friday, December 9 from 4:30-6:30pm for a “Shaken Brain” book signing event. Presented by Kim Cole Real Estate.

2022-11 Joint Conference Poster

Patient and Provider Perspectives on Improving Care for Post-Concussion Symptoms

This poster, created for the International Brain Injury Conference in New York in Sept 2022, offers various perspectives on how to improve concussion care. Attached are a reformatted poster presentation and related webinar links.

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