The Signs of Concussion – A Guide by Norfolk’s CHKD

As personal injury lawyers, we often help people who have suffered traumatic brain injuries. These are some of the most troubling kinds of injury I encounter and they can entail lifetime care needs.

Concussions are one kind of brain injury. They are usually classified as mild traumatic brain injuries, but this does not mean they are not serious.

CHKD's concussion material

Many children and young people suffer concussions when they are playing sports. In the past, these injuries were not treated seriously enough. Now there are some very strict protocols in place.

I am pleased to see that Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters (CHKD) has published an informational pamphlet called Concussion Care.

It contains some useful information about the nature of concussions. While many of us believe a concussion occurs only with a direct hit to the head or when an athlete passes out, this is not the case. Although an athlete who loses consciousness after suffering a blow to the head will almost certainly have a concussion, most players who suffer concussions do not pass out.

If a player shows any signs of a concussion it’s vital to get that player off the field. In the past athletes would be told to play on. That might be acceptable after a knock to the leg but not after a concussion. After removing the player he or she should be evaluated by a doctor who is experienced in treating concussions.

A young athlete’s brain is at risk of developing long-term problems if not treated appropriately and a second blow to the head before the first has been dealt with could lead to permanent catastrophic brain injury or death.

There have been many well-documented cases of NFL athletes committing suicide after suffering brain injuries. Some young athletes have also taken their lives.

CHKD in Norfolk has a specialized sports medicine program that can help young athletes who suffer a wide range of injuries.

It’s important to know what to look for to recognize a concussion on the field.


Symptoms of a Concussion

  1. Headache
  2. Memory loss. Asking what has happened is a classic sign,
  3. Confusion
  4. Appearing stunned or ‘in a fog.’
  5. Nausea,
  6. Difficulty concentrating on school tasks
  7. Double vision
  8. Dizziness
  9. Disturbed sleep.

An athlete who has suffered a concussion may not have all of these symptoms. To find out more about head injuries see our brain injury resources. If you or a loved one has suffered a brain injury after a  sports association, school or club failed to treat a concussion properly, you may have grounds to file a lawsuit. Call us today at (757) 455-0077.

John Cooper

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