syndrome is considered as a minor traumatic brain injury that usually occurs
after a person gets a shock to the head. In PCS, there is a injury in the white
matter of the brain, which is in the inner part of the brain and consists of
the axons of neurons that create the connections within the brain. It is
considered also as a complex disorder in which many various symptoms can
present such as headaches and dizziness and lasting for weeks and months sometimes.
Symptoms are often caused by mechanical damage to the brain and by a trouble of
the messaging structure within the nerves causing the concussion.
Symptoms of post concussive syndrome in early stage are often due to organic
causes with a psychological basis while the symptoms continuing beyond 3
months are due to a nonorganic cause with psychological basis (Al Sayegh, et al., 2010).
In Post-concussive syndrome, symptoms usually occur within
the first week and sometimes disappear within three months. However, the
symptoms may sometimes persist for a year or more. Post-concussive syndrome
presentations include: headaches dizziness, fatigue, irritability, anxiety, insomnia,
low concentration and memory, ringing in the ears, blurry vision, light and noise
sensitivity, and a decrease in taste and smell, which rarely occurs (Al Sayegh,
et al., 2010).
the assessment of people with post concussive syndrome, a clinical made assessment
should be done by doing a GSC. Also Automated
Neuropsychological Assessment Metrics (ANAM) and Immediate Post-Concussion
Assessment and Cognitive Testing (ImPACT) are two assessment tools that can be
used to test cognitive function before injury and after injury and make
comparison according to some studies (Sullivan & Garden, 2011; Wu-chen
& Brady, 2012).
Diagnosis and treatment
1)There is no single test for
post-concussion syndrome. Tests that can be used in diagnosis are CT of brain
or MRI along clinical diagnosis based on presenting symptoms.
2) There is no precise treatment for post-concussion
syndrome. Treatment is made based on the individual symptoms the patient is experiencing
since the types of symptoms and frequency are different for everyone. The
primarily goal after concussion is to efficiently manage symptoms. Treatment
may include prescriptions for pain medications and anti-nausea medication,
and antidepressants on follow up visits if needed. Also, some nonpharmacologic
therapy may be given such as early psychological intervention and cognitive
rehabilitation, physical and occupational therapy. People with Post concussive
syndrome can be advised to get
plenty of sleep at night, have adequate rest during the day,
avoidance of physically demanding activities or
any activities requiring a lot of concentration,
and lastly avoidance of
alcohol or usage of other non-prescribed drugs (Al Sayegh,
et al., 2010; Ayr, et
al., 2009 ).
injury is an injury that happens when an outside mechanical force causes brain damage
and dysfunction. It also results from a forceful blow to the head or body. Traumatic
brain injury can be minor or severe. Mild traumatic brain injury causes by a brief
dysfunction of brain cells whereas a more severe traumatic brain injury can cause
bruising, torn tissues, bleeding and other physical damages to the brain resulting
in long-term complications or even death. TBI can be caused by a focal brain damage due from contact
injury types resulting in contusion, laceration, and intracranial hemorrhage.
It can also be caused by a diffuse brain damage due to acceleration or deceleration
injury types resulting in diffuse axonal injury or brain swelling. The cerebral
injury after TBI is characterized by direct tissue damage that often impaired
regulation of CBF and metabolism causing ischemia (Werner &
Traumatic brain injury can have many signs and
symptoms from physical, sensory, cognitive to mental symptoms. The signs and symptoms
Loss of consciousness that can happen from several minutes to
Persistent headache or worsening headache
Repeated vomiting or nausea
Convulsions or seizures
Dilating pupils of the eyes
Clear fluids drainage from the nose and ears
Incapability to rouse from sleep
Weakness or numbness in fingers and toes
Loss of coordination
Cognitive or mental symptoms
Agitation, combativeness or other rare behaviors
Slurred and nonclear speech
Coma and other disorders affecting conscious
(Shedy et al., 2009; Smits, et al., 2011).
can present with those signs and symptoms of change
in eating, continuous crying and inability to be comforted, easy irritability, inability
to pay attention and in sleep habits, sadness or depressed mood, and loss of
interest in their favorite toys or games (Shedy et al., 2009; Smits, et al.,
Diagnosis and treatment
brain injuries are usually considered as emergencies. Due to their later consequences
that can worsen quickly without treatment, it is important to do a quick
clinical assessment of the injury and provides treatment as well. Glasgow coma scale is one assessment tool containing a 15-point
test that can use to assess the initial severity of a brain injury. Higher
scores mean less severe injuries. Also, getting a detailed history about the
injury is important factor in the assessment. Imaging tests such as CT of brain
with no contrast and MRI along intracranial pressure monitoring are important
in diagnosis (Werner & Engelhard, 2007).
Treatment depends on the severity of the
injury. For mild traumatic brain injury, no treatment is required other than adequate
rest and otc pain relievers to treat a headache for instance. Treatment is
required unless there are persistent, worsening or new symptoms. If
there is moderate or severe injury, treatments should include to make sure
patients have adequate oxygen and blood supply, maintaining blood pressure, and
avoiding any further injury to the head or neck. Medications such as
diuretics, anti-seizure drugs, and coma inducing drugs can be helpful. Emergency
surgery may require if there is a need to reduce more additional damages to the
brain. Lastly, people who had traumatic brain injury often require having
rehabilitation therapy in their plan of care with different rehabilitation
services such as speech, physical, occupational, nurse, recreational therapists (Werner &
Engelhard, 2007; Shedy et al., 2009; Smits, et al., 2011).
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