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Concussion management: How long should my child sit out?

Oct 20, 2017 by

When it comes to concussion management, Richard Okragly MD, a physician with TriHealth Priority Care and director of the TriHealth Primary Care Sports Medicine Fellowship, stresses if there’s one thing to do post-concussion, it’s this: Stay on the sidelines until you’re asymptomatic.

The Issue: Identifying Concussions is Tricky

Per Ohio’s Concussion Law, public and private schools and youth sports organizations are required to educate coaches, parents and students on the signs and symptoms of concussions. “It’s challenging diagnosing a child or patient with a concussion, based on the vagueness of the symptoms. We are probably erring on the side of caution, as we should, especially with our younger, grade school athletes,” Dr. Okragly explains.

Common concussion symptoms include:

·       Dizziness

·       Changes in behavior

·       Headaches – that aren’t normal for the individual

·       Nausea or vomiting

·       Blurred vision

·       Difficulty concentrating

·       Confusion

·       Sensitivity to light

It’s important to note, however, that symptoms can take 24 to 48 hours to develop.

Playing too Soon After a Concussion: What’s the Problem?

A majority of people who have sustained a concussion will need to be sidelined for at least seven to 10 days, but in some cases, an individual could take several weeks to heal.

CT scans and MRIs from concussion studies don’t show structural changes, such as bleeding, in a concussion. “It’s more of a brain chemical change, where the cells become damaged on the cellular level and require more nutrients – more energy – in order to repair themselves,” Dr. Okragly points out. “It’s during that time, when they’re deficient in what they need for their body to run normally, and they get hit – that’s what causes the problem.”

continue: Concussion management: How long should my child sit out?

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