Concussion - Symptoms

Symptoms of concussion include:

  • Headache
  • Disorientation (confusion) as to time, date, or place
  • Dizziness
  • Vacant stare or confused expression
  • Speech that is difficult to understand
  • Lack of coordination or weakness
  • Amnesia (loss of memory) about events just preceding the blow
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Double vision
  • Ringing in the ears

These symptoms may last from several minutes to several hours. More severe or longer-lasting symptoms may indicate more severe brain injury. If a person loses consciousness, it will be for several minutes at the most. If unconsciousness last for a longer period, a more serious form of brain injury may have occurred.

Doctors use a three-point system to determine the seriousness of a concussion. This system helps them to choose the appropriate treatment.

  • Grade 1: No loss of consciousness, brief confusion, and other symptoms that clear up within 15 minutes.
  • Grade 2: No loss of consciousness, brief confusion, and other symptoms that clear up in more than 15 minutes.
  • Grade 3: Loss of consciousness for any period of time.

Days or weeks after the original concussion, certain symptoms may reoccur. These symptoms are called post-concussion syndrome. They include:

  • Headache
  • Loss of ability to concentrate and pay attention
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Sleep disturbance
  • Inability to tolerate light and noise.

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