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What Is Post-concussion Syndrome?

A bump to the head may not seem serious, but it can have long-lasting consequences. If you sustained a concussion in an Atlanta car accident, it is important that you know about post-concussion syndrome.
A concussion is a traumatic brain injury that temporarily affects how the brain works.  Concussion occurs when the brain is hit in a fall, sports accident or car accident. There may or may not be a loss of consciousness.  The set of symptoms that sometimes occur after a concussion are known as post-concussion syndrome.
Post-concussion syndrome symptoms were once known as shell shock.  There are physical symptoms, psychological symptoms, behavioral symptoms and cognitive symptoms.  They include:
Physical Symptoms

  • Headache
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Sensitivity to light or noise
  • Ringing in the ears (tinnitus)
  • Double vision
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Sleep Problems


Psychological and behavioral symptoms

  • Irritability
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Changes in personality
  • Restlessness
  • Aggression
  • Mood swings
  • Anger
  • Decreased libido
  • Impulsiveness
  • Loss of social judgment
  • Lack of emotion
  • Mood swings

Cognitive Symptoms

  • Confusion
  • Problems with attention
  • Impaired judgment
  • Amnesia and short-term memory problems
  • Language problems
  • Slowed processing
  • Difficulty with problem solving

Not all victims show all the symptoms. Post-concussion syndrome may be mild or severe. The symptoms occur within seven to ten days after the accident and usually last up to three months. In some cases, symptoms may be present a year after the injury that caused the concussion.
Scientists are not sure what causes post-concussion syndrome. The risk of post-concussion syndrome is not associated with the severity of the initial head injury. It can be present after mild or serious concussions, or there may be no symptoms even after a severe concussion.
It is believed that the following risk factors may increase a head injury victim's chances of developing post-concussion syndrome:

  • Age - The risk of developing post-concussion syndrome appears to increase with age.
  • Being female - Women are more likely to be treated for post-concussion syndrome; however, women are also more likely than men to seek treatment for medical problems.
  • Being a car accident victim - Victims of car crashes, falls and assaults are more likely to suffer from post-concussion syndrome than those who suffer from sports-related concussions.

There is no test for post-concussion syndrome; diagnosis is based on symptoms after a concussion. Your doctor will probably order an MRI scan to rule out other potential causes for your symptoms. He may refer you to a neurologist. There is no treatment. Your doctor will treat individual symptoms and discomforts. He may suggest physical or cognitive therapy and psychological counseling.
Atlanta brain injury attorney Shane Smith helped clients with traumatic brain injuries and post-concussion syndrome to get compensation. To discuss your claim with an Atlanta brain injury attorney, contact the Law Offices of Shane Smith at 770-HURT-999.



Shane Smith
Advocate for the Seriously Injured in Georgia