Tag Archives: post-concussion symptoms
After a concussion occurs, symptoms most commonly experienced are headache, dizziness, memory problems and sleep disturbances, as well as visual dysfunction. Such symptoms can be difficult to quantify and follow in patients on a long-term basis.
Patient reports of feeling ‘slower than normal’ after a concussion have been associated with visual dysfunction of the central vision reaction times (CVRT). However, until now, little research has been done on peripheral vision reaction times (PVRT) post-concussion. In athletes, where slowed reaction time can put them at higher risk for injury or re-injury, monitoring reaction times in players can be a key assessment before allowing them to return to play.
Results of a study conducted at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine reported that patients who sustained a concussion, followed by symptoms of visual dysfunction, experienced significantly delayed central and peripheral vision reaction times when compared with a control group of patients with no history of concussion. The study is published online this month by the Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine.
“We concluded that CVRT and PVRT are both substantially slowed in patients with post-concussion visual dysfunction with the PVRT being disproportionately prolonged when compared with the healthy control group,” says Joe Clark, PhD, professor in the Department of Neurology and Rehabilitation Medicine.
“Disturbances to peripheral vision can have major implications not only on performance, but also safety, including sports-related return-to-play decisions,” says Clark. “Peripheral vision in particular plays an important role in protecting athletes from impending impacts because they must see and react to events in their periphery.”
Similarly, peripheral vision is important in day-to-day activities of the general population, namely balance and driving. Studies have found that visual sensory symptoms following a concussion can actually be useful indicators and aid in concussion management, but those studies generally depend upon reliable baselines. The current study suggests that comparing central to peripheral reaction times are less dependent upon baselines. Not requiring baselines might make the measurement of the PVRT to CVRT ratio a very useful diagnostic method.
The pilot study used the Dynavision D2, a visual motor and neuro-cognitive rehabilitation and sports training device used by occupational, physical and speech therapists, neurologists, athletic trainers, coaches and tactical professionals.
For athletes, current return-to-play guidelines rely heavily on self-reporting of symptoms, which can be flawed in its subjectivity, Clark says.
“There is a need for methods to objectively assess a patient’s concussion symptoms, in order to best aid their recovery over time. Based on this preliminary study … data on CVRT and PVRT and the ratio between them may provide objective diagnostic data independent of symptoms subjectively reported by the patient.”
The study was supported by a donation for the purchase of a Dynavision; the authors cite no conflicts of interest.
August 2016, Vol. 5, No. 2
Timely reporting on developments and legal strategies at the intersection of sports and concussions—articles that benefit practicing attorneys who may be pursuing a claim or defending a client.
• Court Doesn’t Buy Chubb’s Privacy-Based Argument in Concussion Case
•Will Risk Homeostasis Figure in Hornung’s Lawsuit Against Riddell?
• Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy and Its Link to Repetitive Head Trauma in Sports: A Research Update
•Unnecessary Roughness: FTC Sacking Claims About Brain Health
•Evaluating the Legal and Policy Response to Concussions — a Skeptical View
•Arbitrator to Decide Case Involving Concussion Prevention Program
•Football Concussion Update: Player-on-Player Hits Cause More Serious Head Impacts
•NHL Commissioner Bettman Argues There’s No Evidence Supporting Link Between Hockey and Brain Trauma
•Family of Player Who Died from Concussion-Related Injuries Settles with NCAA, Maryland
Denver Broncos slot receiver Wes Welker has returned to practice, less than two weeks after suffering his third concussion in ten months. He hasn’t been cleared for contact, but that may be a mere formality in the NFL, where the head in the sand mentality is a constant when it comes to traumatic brain injuries.
Someone has to step in and suggest to Welker that he take a couple months off, at least. Welker is not going to do it. How about Peyton Manning or John Fox? Both are presumably decent human beings, who care more about Welker than a slightly improved chance of winning a football game.
Local columnists are doing their part.
“Last season, Welker raised eyebrows by returning from his first concussion, suffered on Nov. 17 against the Kansas City Chiefs, just a week later to face off against the New England Patriots in Foxboro,” wrote Zach Fogg, a columnist with Mile High Sports. “The Broncos were 9-1 at the time and there was little to be gained for Welker by returning early, aside from the opportunity to face off against his former team. The risk vastly outweighed the reward.
“When he suffered another concussion a few weeks later, those fears were vindicated.”
“This time around, more than a few pragmatic members of Broncos nation are asking that Welker consider his long-term health. They’re saying that it’s time for the best slot receiver in the history of the NFL to retire.”
Fogg went on to question Fox’ commitment to the concept of family.
“(W)hat does Fox always tell the media about this team? They’re a family. He loves that word, uses it all the time when talking about the Broncos. Heck, he even worked it into his talking points about Matt Prater’s DUI .
“But if the Broncos are truly the family they claim to be, they’ll consider sitting Welker down and talking to him about his health. That’s what a real family would do.
“What’s more, they should go a step further and back up their words: They should tell Welker that they cannot, in good conscience, continue to send him out onto the gridiron to take another traumatic hit to the head. They should be willing to cut him to make him either consider retirement, or uproot his family to find another place to play.”
“A colleague asked me a hypothetical question this week: Could John Fox live with himself if he put Welker back on the field and an ensuing concussion left the receiver with permanent brain damage, mental illness or, perhaps even worse, in a wheelchair?
“If Welker continues his career in the NFL, it shouldn’t be on the Broncos’ watch. He should retire, but short of that, Denver should not be responsible for allowing him to continue damaging his health.”
for more, visit: http://milehighsports.com/author/zachfoggsports/