A new study has revealed that the worst of concussion symptoms and consequences may not present themselves until six months after the injury occurred. This is concerning because many athletes at young ages are sent back into action far sooner than the six month time frame.
The American Academy of Neurology ran studies on 18 high school and college football players who had experienced a concussion. All of these student athletes showed signs of brain damage six months after the injury. Following current medical protocol, all of these players were cleared to return to the field in seven to ten days. Because symptoms such as headaches, difficulty balancing, and memory or thinking problems usually reveal themselves in the immediate hours and days following the brain injury, current guidelines suggest that players are good to go when those symptoms have dissipated.
"The findings generally add to the growing body of science to suggest that the tail of physiological recovery after concussion extends beyond the time point of clinical recovery," Michael McCrea, Director of Brain Injury Research at the Medical School of Wisconsin, explained.
The student athletes will be studied for two years, and researchers are hopeful that it can help shed light on whether some athletes may be returning to sports too soon. "As odd as this sounds, we want to know not only when is the athlete ready to return to an activity functionality but when is their brain ready to return physiologically," McCrea told The Washington Post.
With football season right around the corner, parents who have children playing the sport should pay attention to their child's behavior and report if they notice any of the following symptoms according to the Mayo Clinic: persisting headaches, confusion, lack of coordination, memory loss, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, ringing in the ears, sleepiness, and excessive fatigue. Concussions caused by playing sports aren't always obvious during the game. Even a player's head hitting the ground awkwardly may cause a brain injury. When in doubt, it's always best to call a doctor and seek medical treatment.
While traumatic brain injuries are a big issue facing athletes, they also can be an effect of auto accidents. As stated, brain injury symptoms may not be apparent even months after a motor vehicle accident. If you or somebody you know has been involved in a collision that may have caused brain damage or a closed head injury, call The Michigan Law Firm, PLLC. Our attorneys will work alongside you to uncover any and all benefits you may be entitled to under Michigan law, even if it has been months after the accident. Call us today, at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free consultation.