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Concussion Effects Can Linger

August 20, 2013

la84_sl_082013_concussion_http_visionhelp_wordpress_comIn June the journal Radiology published the results of a small study which revealed that “structural changes to the brain” were found “1 year after injury after a single concussive episode.”

More from the abstract:

One year after MTBI [mild traumatic brain injury], there was measurable global brain atrophy, larger than that in control subjects.


Regional brain atrophy is not exclusive to moderate and severe traumatic brain injury but may be seen after mild injury. In particular, the anterior part of the cingulum and the cingulate gyrus isthmus, as well as the precuneal GM, may be distinctively vulnerable 1 year after MTBI.

The lingering effects of MTBI could have as big an impact in the classroom as on the field of play, as outlined in an article in today’s Wall Street Journal.

From the WSJ

New research suggests concussion effects may linger weeks after symptoms of dizziness and headaches have disappeared. School-safety experts are focusing attention on the impact of concussions on classroom performance …

… Brain-injury specialists say the mental exertion of normal classwork could even worsen the effects of a concussion. The harder students recovering from a concussion try to focus on any mental activity, the more severe their headaches or dizziness may become.

The cognitive effects of a blow to the head on the playing field can temporarily make focusing on studies, taking tests or listening in classrooms more difficult, several pediatric neurologists said. Concussion-related memory problems, mental sluggishness and inability to focus can affect grades, SAT scores and placement test results

The entire WSJ article currently may be found here.  It may be moved to pay-per-view pages of the newspaper at a later date.

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