Although most children recover fully after a single concussion, others have long-term effects. Of course, prevention is the best strategy, but if a concussion occurs, parents must understand a brain injury has occurred.
Children can experience a range of symptoms after concussion. They require individualized treatments and strategies for returning to activities and to school. A physician with training and experience in treating concussions must provide early interventions and follow-up, regardless of how long recovery takes.
To properly diagnose a concussion and devise a treatment plan requires a thorough physician evaluation, a symptom checklist or an interview, or both, followed by a comprehensive cognitive and physical examination. Download a pocket guide that helps patients prepare for being evaluated.
Child abuse is a top cause of brain injury-related emergency room visits, hospitalizations, and deaths among children of all ages. Diagnosis can be challenging in cases of pediatric abusive head trauma. Prevention strategies at the individual and community level can be effective and there are many available resources.
What happens to the brain after a severe brain injury that renders a person unconscious or “comatose”? Learn the meaning of other terms that describe patients who have disorders of consciousness: the minimally conscious state, cognitive-motor dissociation, covert consciousness, and unresponsive wakefulness syndrome (vegetative state). Researchers are studying advanced technologies evaluating patients with disorders of consciousness, and there are new U.S. and European guidelines that are helping to standardize care and advance the field of brain injury.
Traumatic brain injuries are very common in older adults who fall. They can result in hospitalization, death, or disability especially in this age group and those on certain medications. In this post, an elderly woman has a delayed hematoma from an injury that could have been deadly. Falls can be prevented and Dr. Sandel shares important information about risk factors and tips for prevention.
Dr. Sandel discusses brain injury medicine, a new subspecialty of medicine, and getting the best care after a concussion or more severe brain injury in the US. Kim Justus discusses her own history in regards to brain injury and her struggles to find care. She also discusses Dr. Sandel’s book, Shaken Brain, as a helpful resource for listeners.
Mark Gilson WRFG Atlanta interviews Dr. Sandel. The interview is accompanied by thematic music about the brain and includes a discussion with Dr. Sandel on medical and societal issues related to brain injuries.
Nurse Rona Renner of KPFA interviews Dr. Sandel about her book, Shaken Brain. They discuss the many causes of concussions and how patients are best evaluated and treated. She fields questions about the neurodegenerative conditions that are associated with brain injuries, especially repetitive brain injuries.
A physiatrist (physical medicine and rehabilitation physician) treats disorders of the muscles, bones, and nervous system, and may practice in inpatient or outpatient settings. Physiatrists usually provide care with other rehabilitation providers such as physical, occupational, and speech therapists, and may work in teams for patients with catastrophic injuries or complex disorders, especially in rehabilitation hospitals.
Sleep disturbances are common after brain injury and require comprehensive evaluation and management. Other sleep disorders such as difficulty falling asleep, staying asleep, and excessive daytime sleepiness are common. Some patients with brain injuries develop sleep apnea, and screening for this disorder is important because of the risk of hypoxia and strokes that lead to additional brain injury.
Dr. Cheri Baluwet, a Paralympic athlete, physiatrist and sports medicine physician, has insights on concussion in Paralympic sports, and the differences in evaluation, prevention, and management for these elite athletes.
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