Konkussion Hotline Staffed 24/7 by Volunteers
September 13, 2016, Kitchener, Ontario
Posted by: Robert Deutschmann, Personal Injury Lawyer
Concussion is a confusing and often difficult injury to recognize. Many people who play sports or have children who participate in physical activities are left wondering whether an injury is significant and warrants a trip to the emergency room or urgent care clinic. To help fill the knowledge gap between what we know is a ‘bad’ injury and what ’might be something’ a Toronto physician has opened a volunteer staffed 24-hour hotline.
Dr. Jha is a physician specializing in the ‘silent epidemic’ of concussions. His goal is to help inform callers of the causes, diagnosis and treatment of head injuries. He had seen too many cases of children sustaining concussions on a Friday or Saturday night and not being taken for medical care immediately because parents or coaches didn’t really know what to do. Often the kids are allowed to return to play within a day or two and aren’t taken to get medical attention until symptoms become very clear. At this point further damage has often occurred.
Dr. Jha says that you cannot rely on MRIs and CT scans to diagnose concussion as those machines are not sensitive enough to detect the bruising of the brain that happens during a concussion. He also says that most people think you can only get a concussion from a direct blow to the head. This is wrong. A concussion can occur if you take a hit to the chest causing your head to pivot and brain to shake. Whiplash can cause concussion. Concussions can occur from car crashes, physical violence, slips and falls, and of course from direct blows to the head. If you suspect a concussion, or have a diagnosis of concussion you should NOT return to play or vigorous activity until you are cleared by a medical professional.
The hotline has been named the Konkussion hotline and can be called 24 hours a day 1-855-899-5665.
The Mayo Clinic lists these as commons signs and symptoms of concussion:
Signs and symptoms of a concussion may include:
- Headache or a feeling of pressure in the head
- Temporary loss of consciousness
- Confusion or feeling as if in a fog
- Amnesia surrounding the traumatic event
- Dizziness or "seeing stars"
- Ringing in the ears
- Slurred speech
- Delayed response to questions
- Appearing dazed
Some symptoms of concussions may be immediate or delayed in onset by hours or days after injury, such as:
- Concentration and memory complaints
- Irritability and other personality changes
- Sensitivity to light and noise
- Sleep disturbances
- Psychological adjustment problems and depression
- Disorders of taste and smell
Symptoms in children
Head trauma is very common in young children. But concussions can be difficult to recognize in infants and toddlers because they may not be able to describe how they feel. Nonverbal clues of a concussion may include:
- Appearing dazed
- Listlessness and tiring easily
- Irritability and crankiness
- Loss of balance and unsteady walking
- Crying excessively
- Change in eating or sleeping patterns
- Lack of interest in favorite toys
Seek emergency care for an adult or child who experiences a head injury and symptoms such as:
- Repeated vomiting
- A loss of consciousness lasting longer than 30 seconds
- A headache that gets worse over time
- Changes in his or her behavior, such as irritability
- Changes in physical coordination, such as stumbling or clumsiness
- Confusion or disorientation, such as difficulty recognizing people or places
- Slurred speech or other changes in speech
Other symptoms include:
- Vision or eye disturbances, such as pupils that are bigger than normal (dilated pupils) or pupils of unequal sizes
- Lasting or recurrent dizziness
- Obvious difficulty with mental function or physical coordination
- Symptoms that worsen over time
- Large head bumps or bruises on areas other than the forehead in children, especially in infants under 12 months of age
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About Deutschmann Law
Deutschmann Law serves South-Western Ontario with offices in Kitchener-Waterloo, Cambridge, Woodstock, Brantford, Stratford and Ayr. The law practice of Robert Deutschmann focuses almost exclusively in personal injury and disability insurance matters. For more information, please visit www.deutschmannlaw.com or call us toll-free at 1-866-414-4878.
The opinions expressed here, while intended to provide useful information, should not be interpreted as legal recommendations or advice.