Concussion - Cause

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What is concussion and what causes concussion?

Concussion describes a brain injury where, after an injury, there are functional changes that occur in how the brain works but no structural damage can be seen on standard imaging tests like CT scan.

Mild traumatic brain injury, or concussion, can be defined as a short-lived loss of brain function due to head trauma that resolves spontaneously. With concussion, function may be interrupted but there is no structural damage to the brain.

The brain floats in cerebrospinal fluid and is encased in the skull. These protections allow it to withstand many of the minor injuries that occur in day-to-day life. However, if there is sufficient force to cause the brain to bounce against the rigid bones of the skull, then there is potential for injury. It is the acceleration and deceleration of the brain against the inside of the skull that can cause the brain to be irritated and interrupt its function. The acceleration can come from a direct blow to the head or face, or from other body trauma that causes the head to shake. While temporary loss of consciousness due to injury means that a concussion has taken place, most concussions occur without the patient being knocked out. Studies of football players find that the most of those affected were not aware that they had sustained a head injury.

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See what others are saying

Comment from: thebbmurphy, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: December 09

A few days before Thanksgiving I had a seizure. I was in the living room and fell face down onto the terrazzo floor when the seizure ended I had a large bruise on my forehead the spot is still sore and now I am having headaches every day and now an annoying ringing in my ears. I already take Fiorinal and Fioricet for idiopathic Chorea and neither drug is effective for the headache. I also take naproxen, Percocet and ibuprofen with no relief. I have had concussions before, but not with the chronic headaches or the ringing in my ears. I did see my primary care doctor and my neurologist 2 days later. I know I need to go back but I am afraid to drive; my seizures occur years apart but the fear is there this time.

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Comment from: k1w1b1, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: January 15

I have had four concussions, two from playing rugby in college, two from alcohol related happenings. My last concussion was six or seven years ago. Today when I got hurt in the head I feel the pain exactly where I hit my head the last time and one eye is relaxed, hard for me to open. I do now know it doesn't take much to rattle that brain again.

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