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Post-Concussion Syndrome

Do you have PCS? Symptoms of Post-concussion Syndrome

post concussion syndrome

Concussions are one of the most common injuries people experience after a car accident. While most concussion symptoms improve in a matter of weeks, some people experience longer-term effects, known as post-concussion syndrome.

Medical professionals classify these head injuries as mild traumatic brain injuries (mTBI), but the term “mild” shouldn’t lull you into thinking that concussions are no big deal. Below are a few reasons why:

A concussion involves brain damage

The CDC defines a concussion this way:

“A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury—or TBI—caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head or by a hit to the body that causes the head and brain to move rapidly back and forth. This sudden movement can cause the brain to bounce around or twist in the skull, creating chemical changes in the brain and sometimes stretching and damaging brain cells.”

The damage to brain tissue can cause a number of symptoms, and patients should follow their doctors’ orders to ensure a full recovery without additional damage. Symptoms can include:

  • Headache
  • Neck pain
  • Dizziness and light sensitivity
  • Blurred vision
  • Speech problems
  • Vomiting or nausea
  • Trouble sleeping

As we mentioned above, these symptoms usually improve for patients within a few weeks. Limiting activity, especially exercise and sports, will help most people recover well from a concussion.

Post-concussion syndrome is more serious

For a smaller number of patients, symptoms can last for many months or even years. In many of these cases, doctors will diagnose post-concussion syndrome.

The symptoms of post-concussion syndrome, or PCS, include:

  • Prolonged or frequent headaches
  • Neck pain that doesn’t improve
  • Fatigue
  • Anxiousness and anxiety
  • Irritability or mood swings
  • Insomnia
  • Memory loss and/or poor concentration
  • Ringing in the ears
  • Sensitivity to light and noise
  • Blurry vision

According to the Mayo Clinic, experts have not pinpointed why some patients are more prone to PCS than others, but some suspect that structural changes in the brain after a concussion contribute to longer-term symptoms or more severe symptoms. Others point to similarities between PCS symptoms and those of depression, which could indicate a psychological component to the condition.

In any case, proper medical treatment is paramount in PCS cases. If you have been injured in an accident, always have a medical professional check you for concussion symptoms. If your symptoms do not improve after two or three weeks, discuss the possibility of a post-concussion diagnosis with your doctor.

If you have been injured in an accident, contact us for a free case evaluation. We can help you determine if you have a case and help you uncover all insurance coverage available to you.

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