7 Healthcast: Concussions
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Fourteen-year-old Perry Von Rosenving of Weston loves lacrosse.
"I have played for three years. My brother got me into it. It’s just an aggressive sport," said Von Rosenving.
That aggression took its toll during one recent game.
"It was about the second quarter. I must have gotten hit. I mean, no one really saw it. I walked off the field kind of confused," said Von Rosenving.
The next day, Perry’s parents say they noticed something wasn’t right with their son, so they took him to the hospital.
"It was scary as a parent. He wasn’t himself and he was sort of grasping to try to figure out why he couldn’t remember the things he would normally remember," said Bruce Von Rosenving, Perry's father.
Doctors at Massachusetts General Hospital determined Perry suffered a concussion, which is a mild, traumatic brain injury.
"It’s a result of a jolt to the head, or to the body that causes the head to move and essentially the brain is moving within the confines of the bony skull. So there is a sort of shaking that occurs within the cerebrum, the brain," said Dr. Kelly McInnis of Massachusetts General Hospital.
Perry says he can’t really remember the day he got hit in the head, and he was still experiencing symptoms days later.
"I was a little forgetful of things. I couldn’t really concentrate that much. I got headaches a lot," said Perry Von Rosenving.
Doctors say the first step to treating a concussion is to recognize all the different symptoms.
"More often than not, there is no loss of consciousness. The athlete can have a constellation of symptoms that includes physical symptoms like headache, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, balance issues, troubles with double vision, and blurry vision," said Dr. McInnis.
She says younger athletes are particularly vulnerable to injuries because their brains are still developing.
"They tend to have longer recover than the older athletes, the collegiate athletes, and in particular, the professional athletes," said Dr. McInnis.
Finally, Dr. McInnis says recovery time from a concussion is different for each person, so never rush it.
"The basic rules for return to play after a concussion: the athlete must be 100 percent asymptomatic. The athlete must have no symptoms with physical exertion and as well as with cognitive exertion," said said Dr. McInnis.
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