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  816-875-4260

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Aaron House

I Didn’t Hit My Head – How Do I Still Have a Concussion?

It is possible to suffer from a concussion without ever experiencing an impact to your head.  A concussion may be caused not only by a direct injury to your head, but also by a whip-lash type injury that causes your head and brain to shake quickly back and forth.  It may be from a fall or blow to the body. You might see this type of injury in a car accident where the head and neck change directions quickly, causing the brain to shake.  You also might see this with a sports injury such as in a football game. A player running full speed in one direction is tackled (with no head impact) and the rapid change of direction causes their brain to shake and results in a concussion.

A concussion is sometimes referred to as a mild traumatic brain injury (TBI).  Concussions are classified as mild because they are not typically considered life threatening, but nevertheless their effects can be serious and can continue for life.

Symptoms of a Concussion

Only ten percent of concussions result in a loss of consciousness and thus experiencing one is not required in order to be diagnosed.  However, when a person suffers a concussion, that person will likely experience an altered mental state such as a period of amnesia or simply a feeling of being dazed or confused.  For example, some accident victims who have a concussion may not remember any details about the car accident and may not remember the car accident at all. Typical symptoms include feeling “foggy” and/or an inability to remember events surrounding the injury.  Other symptoms include the inability to concentrate, constant and/or severe headaches, nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to bright lights and loud noises, irritability, sadness or nervousness, and either excessive or disrupted sleep patterns.

Medical Testing

If you suspect you have suffered from a concussion, you should seek immediate medical attention.  A neurologist will perform testing to determine the extent of your injury. They will likely perform a CT scan to confirm that your brain has not suffered any bleeding that would require intervention.  In time, your doctors may conduct a neuropsychological exam to test your memory and other cognitive skills. Rest (i.e. “brain rest”) is often the most important tool to help recover from a concussion. You may find it difficult to immediately return to work.  And because of the emotional and psychological symptoms resulting from a concussion, often interpersonal relationships can become strained.

Future Health Problems

Fortunately, many people who suffer from a concussion will recover over time, but some will not.  Even for those people who do recover, a person’s chances of developing early dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease substantially increases. How quickly a person is able to recover will likely depend significantly upon their age and their health at the time of the injury, as well as on the severity of the concussion.  Also, having a concussion puts a person at much greater risk for future concussions. Post-concussion syndrome is what happens when you find that your symptoms have persisted for a year or more.  Symptoms associated with post-concussion syndrome can include, dizziness, headaches, anxiety, insomnia, fatigue, and irritability.

If your concussion was caused by another person’s negligence, you may be entitled to receive compensation for past and future medical expenses, lost wages, loss of earning capacity, pain and suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life. Contact Aaron House today at 816-875-4260 for a free consultation.

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