Concussion at a Glance: Symptoms, Causes and Treatments

February 6, 2024
January 26, 2024
Concussion at a Glance: Symptoms, Causes and Treatments

What is Concussion? 

Concussion is a brain injury, caused by head trauma, that causes neurological symptoms such as: headache, confusion, loss of consciousness, memory loss, dizziness, excessive sleepiness, mood changes, and others. Rapid movement in the brain causes the brain tissue to change shape which can damage or stretch brain cells. This can make it difficult for the brain cells to communicate and function properly. 

Concussion can be with loss of consciousness (LOC) or without loss of consciousness. Any concussion with LOC should be seen at the nearest ER first. Certain brain imaging may need to be obtained, depending on the severity of the event.

Types of Concussion

Concussion is typically categorized as mild, moderate, or severe. Concussion may also be termed traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Mild TBI is a Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) score 13-15 measured at approximately 30 minutes after the injury, including: any period of loss of consciousness, any loss of memory for events immediately before or after the accident, or any alteration in mental state at the time of the accident, as long as the severity of deficits doesn't lead to an initial GCS score of less than 13 (American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine).

Moderate TBI, is with loss of consciousness for great than 30 minutes, a Glasgow coma scale (GCS) score of less than 13 with post-traumatic amnesia or altered level of awareness for more than 24 hours, and imaging evidence of a TBI (examples: skull fracture, intracranial hemorrhage, or brain contusion). 

Severe TBI may have a prolonged LOC with a GCS of 3-8. Severe TBI may result in permanent brain damage with neurological deficits. These patients may often require surgical intervention and are at risk for seizures. 

Concussion Recovery and Post-Concussion Syndrome Treatment

Rest and restricting activity are often the first treatment intervention for post concussion. Gradually returning to your everyday activity is important to remember. Symptomatic management for post concussion recovery is important. You may need referrals for physical therapy, occupational therapy, or cognitive behavior therapy. Headache is often a symptom of concussion and can be treated with non pharmacological and pharmacological therapies. These can all be discussed with your provider. 

If you have experience a concussion and even weeks later are still struggling with symptoms such as headache, brain fog, memory issues, personality changes or any other concerning symptoms, you can book an appointment with a Neura provider to develop an individualized treatment plan.

For more great content, follow us:
Instagram IconFacebook Icon
Leslie Carroll, NP
Leslie Carroll, APRN, FNP-C, is a certified family nurse practitioner with over 8 years of experience in neurology. At Neura, she treats stroke, concussion, tremor and other conditions.
About the Author
Leslie Carroll, APRN, FNP-C, is a certified family nurse practitioner with over 8 years of experience in neurology. She received her Master’s in Nursing from Union University and has spent her entire NP career working in inpatient and outpatient general neurology. She has extensive experience in stroke care. She also enjoys treating other neurological conditions, including concussion and tremor.

Share this article

Looking for expert neurology care?

Video visits within days

Talk with neurologists

Get Rx delivered

Learn More

Finally, expert neurology care at your fingertips

Neura Health is a comprehensive virtual neurology clinic. Meet with a neurology specialist via video appointment, and get treatment from home.

Phone and Leaf Mockup