Brain Injury Diagnosis & Treatment
How are traumatic brain injuries diagnosed, and what treatment is recommended for concussions and other brain injuries?
Treatments for post-concussion symptoms include targeted medication trials and various rehabilitation therapies such as physical, occupational, and speech therapy. Sometimes complementary therapies can be helpful, too.
Diagnosis of the causes of post-concussion syndrome and targeted treatment requires a thorough physician evaluation, either using a symptom checklist or an open-ended physician interview called a “history” and “review of symptoms.”
Because post-concussive symptoms overlap with other conditions, a misdiagnosis is possible. Sometimes people have more than one diagnosis, too. The term post-concussion syndrome is controversial, too, because it is really not a syndrome. A syndrome has a consistent cluster of symptoms or signs that make it a syndrome. This is not true for post-concussion syndrome.
An early childhood teacher talks with Dr. Sandel about about concussion in young children. What causes it? What do we need to look for? And how can we help during the recovery process?
There are many unanswered research questions about concussion diagnosis, pathophysiology, risk factors, and effective treatments. About 50 are included here to emphasize the fact that we still need a lot more research in brain injury medicine for advances in diagnosis and treatment.
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.
Headaches are extremely common after a traumatic brain injury, but there are various treatments that vary depending on the phenotype or cause.
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.
CT and MRI scans are the most common imaging modalities to evaluate people with traumatic brain injury, but advanced imaging methods are more promising for diagnosis and prognosis. However, interpretations of findings can vary.
Conventional treatments like medications may not help symptoms after a brain injury. Complementary or alternative treatments may help.
Stories of people who experience a traumatic brain injury can help to support and educate others. Seth had a protracted recovery, but ultimately a good one. (2 parts)
Stories of athletes like Brittany who experience concussions or more severe brain injuries can help to educate others. She did get back on track.
Keep up to date
Get updates on the latest in concussion, brain health, and science-related tools from Dr. Elizabeth Sandel, M.D.