Coastal Neuropsychology & Concussion Specialists
Dr Haygoush Kalinian, Clinical Neuropsychologist
If you or your child has experienced head trauma, please contact us, we specialize in treatment of concussion
SPORTS CONCUSSION AND CTE
WHAT IS CONCUSSION?
A blow to the head or sudden jerky motion of the neck, as in a “whiplash” type injury (head does not need to hit something or be hit); can disrupt normal function of the brain. This type of brain injury is called a Concussion or Mild Traumatic Brain Injury (mTBI). Concussions are not life threatening and in most cases, there are no lasting effects from injury to the brain. Eight out of ten patients with a mild head injury show some sings of the syndrome during the first 3 months after the accident. However, 15% of patients with mild head injury continue to experience symptoms of PCS 1 year after the injury.
SUSTAINING A CONCUSSION
YOU CAN STILL SUSTAIN A CONCUSSION OR mTBI WITHOUT LOSING CONSCIOUSNESS!
The brain is made up of millions of long, thin nerve fibers. Some of these fibers can stretch, snap, or break as a consequence of a head injury. Like any other part of the body, the brain also has blood vessels that can tear and bleed. This happens soon after the injury, it often stops on its own and heal like any cut will. Moreover, due to the microscopic size of these nerve fibers, modern technology has yet to visualize them. Therefore, CT/MRI scans of the brain of a patient with PCS are typically normal. Snapped nerves and broken blood vessels are the cause of symptoms after a head injury
WHAT ARE THE SIGNS OF CONCUSSION?
Dizziness, Drowsiness, Nausea/vomiting, Blurred or Double Vision, Loss of balance, Irritability and Anger, Anxiety, Depression, Insomnia, Fatigue, Short-term Memory Loss, Attention and Concentration Problems, Planning and Organizing Difficulties, Decision Making and Problem Solving, Disorientation, Confusion, Ringing in Ears, Change in Behavior (impulsive), Change in Personality
WHAT IS THE COURSE OF RECOVERY?
The recovery process depends on several factors: 1) age (youth athletes take longer to recover from concussion). 2) severity of symptoms. 3) mental and physical health before the head trauma. 4) any prior head injuries (the accumulative effects of brain injury influences the course of recovery). 5) alcohol or drug use (slows & prevents recovery). The most rapid recovery typically happens the first 1-3 months after head trauma and most patients will be back to normal after a few days or weeks. If symptoms get worse or new symptoms develop after that time, than this is a sign to consult with a Clinical Neuropsychologist, a doctor specialized in diagnosing and treating concussions or mTBI.
WHAT IS CTE?
Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) is a progressive degenerative disease of the brain found in people with a history of repetitive brain trauma, including concussion. CTE has been known to affect boxers since the 1920’s (when it was termed punch drunk syndrome or dementia pugilistica). However, in recent years the disease has been found in other athletes, including football and hockey players, as well as in military veterans
WHAT IS NEUROPSYCHOLOGICAL TESTING?
Neuropsychological testing has been used over 30 years in the assessment of cognitive and emotional functioning after concussion or mild traumatic brain jury ( mTBI ) . Neuropsychological tests are objective measures & designed to examine cognitive skills and abilities such as intelligence, problem solving, memory, concentration, impulse control, and reaction time, to name a few. Coastal Neuropsychology Specialists specializes in comprehensive Neuropsychological evaluation to help you or your child by providing individualized treatment plan to improve quality of life.
In organized high school sports, concussions occur more often in competitive sports, with football accounting for more than 60% of concussions.
High school football accounts for 47 percent of all reported sports concussions, with 33 percent of concussions occurring during practice.
Rates of sport concussion
- Football 47%
- Girls’ soccer 36%
- Boys ice hockey 27%
- Boys’ soccer 22%
- Girls’ basketball 21%
- Wrestling 18%
“Dr. Kalinian is very professional, knowledgeable, and genuinely cares about her patients. She has been extremely helpful in helping me recover from a severe concussion. Her detailed tests helped determine the best recovery plan to ensure a full recovery, and to avoid further injury as I began to ramp back up at work. I highly recommend Dr. Kalinian to anyone seeking help for their brain. She is an outstanding Doctor.”- DG
Get in Touch
Concussion Video PlaylistClick the icon on the upper/left of the video player to view over 250 videos on concussions
Concussion Educational Resources
Concussion in Sports
This pamphlet from the American College of Sports Medicine provides information on what may cause a concussion as well as the symptoms to look out for.
Keep Your Head About You – And Keep Your Kid from Losing Theirs
This resource provides a wealth of information on the impact traumatic brain injuries has on youth and professional athletes, as well as a call to action on how to make contact sports safer for everyone.
Living with Brain Injury
This guide from the Brain Injury Association of America discusses what functions of the brain are impacted as a result of TBI.
Concussion Toolkit for Parents, Players and Coaches
The Concussion Awareness Training Tool provides a wealth of information on how to provide support to children who have suffered a concussion.
HEADS UP to Youth Sports: Online Training
This online course from the CDC offers student athletes, parents, coaches and educators the opportunity to learn a broad range of TBI topics, including how to prevent and respond to these injuries.
Get the help you need today
If you or a loved one has experienced sport-related concussion and you are looking for concussion specialists in Orange County CA (Dana Point, Laguna Beach, Laguna Niguel, Mission Viejo, San Clemente, San Juan Capistrano CA), please contact our office to schedule consultation with our experts