Concussion is a common type of brain injury that must be closely monitored to prevent long-term damage.
A concussion occurs when the soft tissue that composes the brain is disturbed by some type of impact, such as being shaken or jarred. This disruption can lead to damage to the brain’s blood vessels and nerves. Effects of a concussion can range from minor to long-lasting.
“One can experience a concussion in a variety of ways, with a fall, traffic accident and sports injury among some of the most common,” said Jeffry C. Ruff Jr., D.O., a specialist in neurology who sees patients at Maury Regional Medical Center.
The eight most common signs of a concussion are:
- Vision changes
- Headache or ringing in the ears
- Balance issues or dizziness
- Behavior changes
- Confusion or memory loss
- Trouble concentrating
- Nausea or vomiting
Concussion occurs most frequently in children and teenagers, but can affect anyone at any age.
When a concussion is suspected, it is important to seek medical attention and to refrain from normal activities until being cleared to do so. Medical professionals determine the seriousness of a concussion based on a grading system that evaluates the length of symptoms and whether the individual loses consciousness.
“Results of a physical exam – along with findings from imaging studies – can help determine the level of a concussion’s seriousness and guide decisions on when the individual should return to normal activities,” said Dr. Ruff.
Jeffry C. Ruff Jr., D.O., is a specialist in neurology with Maury Regional Medical Group who sees patients at Maury Regional Medical Center. Dr. Ruff received his medical degree from Arizona College of Osteopathic Medicine in Glendale, Arizona. He also has a bachelor’s degree in athletic training and has a specific interest in sports-related neurology.