Alternative MedicinesInfectionInjuries
Drugs
   Arm or Leg Fractures
   Asphyxia
   Blunt Chest Injuries
   Blunt and Penetrating Abdominal Injuries
   Burns
   Cerebral Contusion
   Cold Injuries
   Concussion
   Decompression Sickness
   Dislocated or Fractured Jaw
   Dislocations and Subluxations
   Electric Shock
   Fractured Nose
   Heat Syndrome
   Insect Bites and Stings
   Near Drowning
   Open Trauma Wounds
   Penetrating Chest Wounds
   Perforated Eardrum
   Poisoning
   Poisonous Snakebites
   Radiation Exposure
   Rape Trauma Syndrome
   Skull Fractures
   Spinal Injuries
   Sprains and Strains
   Traumatic Amputation
   Whiplash Injuries


Concussion

Concussion is a disturbance of function of the nerve cells in the brain as a result of a blow to the skull. This means that parts of the brain's functions are temporarily 'on hold'.

By far the most common head injury, a concussion results from an acceleration-deceleration injury or a blow to the head hard enough to jostle the brain and make it strike the skull, causing temporary neural dysfunction, but not hard enough to cause a cerebral contusion. Most concussions victims recover within 48 hours. Repeated concussions, however, exact a cumulative toll on the brain.

Causes

The blow that causes a concussion is usually sudden and forceful - a fall to the ground, a punch to the head, a motor vehicle crash. Sometimes such a blow results from child, spouse, or elder abuse.

Signs and symptoms

The signs and symptoms of a concussion can be subtle and may not appear immediately. Symptoms can last for days, weeks or longer.

Your behavior, mental ability and physical skills all are linked to specific areas of your brain. The severity and side effects of a head injury depend greatly on which area of your brain was most affected.

Immediate signs and symptoms of a concussion may include:

  • Confusion
  • Amnesia
  • Headache
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Unusual eye movements
  • Muscle weakness on one or both sides
  • Walking problems

Diagnostic tests

Computed tomography scanning and magnetic resonance imaging help rule out fractures and more serious injuries.

Treatment

Most patients require no treatment except bed rest, observations, and nonnarcotic analgesics for headache.

Prevention

Attention to safety , including the use of appropriate athletic gear, such as bike helmets and seat belts, reduces the risk of head injury.

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