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Traumatic Brain Injury and Post Concussion Syndrome For traumatic brain injury (TBI) and post concussion syndrome (PCS).

Update: my 9y/o hockey player

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Unread 02-12-2013, 12:06 AM   #1
MsRriO
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Default Update: my 9y/o hockey player

It's been just over three weeks since my son's concussion incident in hockey.

He had the usual symptoms. Head and neck pain, dizziness, confusion, ringing in ears, sensitivity to light and sound.

I kept him home from school for a week. Lots of cognitive rest, lots of naps, lots of icing the neck.

Then he went to half days at school for the 2nd week. He was not permitted outdoor recess or gym class. Again, lots of rest stressed to him. No activity that breaks a sweat.

Tried full time school last week. He had to be picked up once, for headache. Otherwise quite good. Resumed outdoor recess but not gym class yet.

When his headaches seemed to be dwindling, (by three weeks) he was cleared by the doc to return to hockey practice (not games) to do some light skating to see how he does.

So today (3 weeks and 3 days post concussion) he tried skating and said he felt very dizzy. When I asked were there other times he might feel dizzy he said, oh yeah when I use the computer at school and sometimes when I read.

My heart just sank. It was new information for me. I thought he was better.

Does this mean he is doomed to this post concussion torture like the rest of us? I could just cry... My brain is not doing well tonight so I'm having trouble being rational.

Does this mean I will need to push for him to get that vision therapy some posters talk about and prism glasses? It's been extremely difficult for me to get help up here, and now the thought of having to organize help for him too... In the middle of nowhere. Ugh.

I worry that he is destined to have this PCS torture due to his DNA and my obvious predisposition to the syndrome.

And he is devastated that he isn't able to play hockey yet. I know that's small potatoes to us but to him, it's his whole world. I hurt for him.

Any chance I'm wrong about PCS and he may just heal yet? I tried so hard to do everything I could for his recovery. I made the child rest SO much. I still didn't do enough to prevent this. Upset...
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About it: October 26, 2012 I fell backward on an icy parking lot at work. I was on Workers Comp for 9 months. My PCS : everyday headaches became once in a while headaches, and neck pain became manageable. Still have occasional mild dizziness, sometimes fullness in the ears, convergence insufficiency, sequencing struggles, short term memory struggles, verbal processing delays. CT neg, MRI neg. Therapies: prism glasses, acupuncture, icing neck, resting, supplementing, Elavil 20mg at bedtime.

NEW: Completed 12 weeks of physical therapy and returned to work full time.

About me: I'm a marketing manager, a mom with a blended family and wife to a heart attack survivor. I believe my brain injury taught me more than it cost me. I'm grateful to still be me!
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Unread 02-12-2013, 01:13 AM   #2
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Sorry to hear he is not recovered yet. I think I would keep him off the ice for now. You don't want to risk a fall. I guess if he is not feeling awful all the time, you should get him to stop doing things that affect him. Hope you can find someone close by. What about going to Calgary? Good places there, I hear.
Hang in there. You are good for your son because you know how he feels. I am sure he will be fine.
In terms of continuing hockey..I think that is a big question for you as a mother. He should not get another concussion and it is a high risk sport. Sigh. Still struggling with my 9 year old daughter's love of the game...I feel very conflicted....I am sure you do to. parenting!
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Unread 02-12-2013, 06:54 AM   #3
Mark in Idaho
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If his brain is this sensitive to impact, maybe you should consider holding him out of hockey until he is 14 and his brain is stronger.

Are there any speed skating leagues in your area? Maybe he can develop skating skills without the same risk of concussions.

I cringe when I think of such a young person having PCS.

My best to you both.
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59 years old, retired due to disability, married 34 years, father of three, grandfather of four, Suffered a serious concussion at 10 years old (1965) stopped most driving after concussion at 46 years old (2001), Post Concussion Syndrome/Multiple Concussion/Impact Syndrome with PTSD, immediate/short term visual and auditory memory problems, slowed processing speed, visual/auditory processing difficulties, insomnia, absence seizures, OCD, 14 concussions since first concussion at 8 years old, Taking paroxetine for 14 years and gabapentin for 12 years. Added L-Tryptophan and stopped paroxetine after 3 months of tapering. I currently take 100 mgs of 5-HTP AM, 500 mgs of L-Tryptophan at noon.

As of Nov 15th, Due to high stress issues resulting in PTSD, docs put me on 3 meds. Clonazepam but only for 30 days ) .125 mgs twice daily (Doc presc. .25 mgs 2x daily but half a tablet is good) , citalopram (Celexa), an SSRI , and olanzapine (Zyprexa), an atypical anti-psychotic that usually causes weight gain before bed. I lost over 30 pounds since mid July. It just stopped the weight loss. Took me off the gabapentin. I am feeling better than I have in years.

This great feeling only lasted a month. Back to the same old PCS doldrums.

May 2014, I am off the olanzapine due to a 6 fold price increase. Back on 600 mgs of gabapentin before bed.

I am also taking L-Theanine to help with GABA regulation


"Be Still and Know That I am God" Psalm 46:10
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Unread 02-12-2013, 09:33 AM   #4
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I'm so sorry to hear he is still having problems I wouldn't worry about PCS yet though because he is probably still healing from his concussion. My neuropsych goes by 1 month then 3 months, then 6, then 1 year then 2 years as being recovery goals. If he isn't recovered by the one month then he probably will be by the 3 months statistically. The further along you go the longer it takes and the statistics drop.

I couldn't imagine letting my son play hockey again. I would feel forever guilt ridden if another concussion occurred with any permanent damage. In hockey it seems it's not "if" it's "when" another concussion occurs. You have to decide what you think is best though.

If he's still dizzy perhaps he would benefit from vestibular rehab. This is something he can get into fairly quickly without having to wait 4 months to see a specialist. There are dizziness tests they can do to see when he is no longer dizzy and ready to go back to activities.

As far as eye testing goes, there's very little in Canada that compares to the NORA examines that everyone talks about on here. I found a couple in my province but they are an hour away at least and over $600 for the 2 hours of testing. I'm going to do it if I can't get a referral to a neuro ophthalmologist in two weeks.

That is who you need a referral to is a neuro ophthalmologist but again there's very few of them and they are many months to see. Maybe just waiting a couple more weeks will be enough. Keep him calm and resting when he's not at school.

One thing I read was to be careful not to let your anxiety go onto him. I'm sure you're not but I just wanted to mention to be careful that he doesn't overhear you talking to someone or saying that you're worried he won't get better because hearing that may make him anxious and then not get better.

Good luck to you! I hope he just needs some more time to rest and then he'll be fine again. He does have a lot on his side like age, gender, number of concussions, etc.

I hope you're having a better day today!

CC
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I'm a 39 year old, female, accountant. On July 2, 2012 I crashed my bike at the end of a 65KM road ride. I was fine that day but woke up the next morning to my current world.

Ongoing symptoms include: dizziness, blurred vision, light and noise sensitivities, cognitive problems, uncontrollable emotions/depression/anxiety, headaches (but they're getting better), mental and physical fatigue, difficulty communicating and sleep disturbances.

Currently seeing a fabulous Neuro Psychologist and vestibular physiotherapist and hoping to soon see a neuro ophthalmologist. I am currently doing 20 minute stationary bike rides daily, 20 minutes of meditating, 15 minutes of Lumosity and lots of resting. I have not been able to work or drive since the accident.

The things that have helped me the most since the accident are vestibular therapy, gel eye drops (for blurred vision, sensitivity and dryness), amitriptyline (10mg), and meditating. I am finally starting to see some slight improvements and am hopeful!

My brain WANTS to heal itself... I just have to let it and stop trying to get better!
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Unread 02-12-2013, 09:45 AM   #5
Consider
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Poor kid. I can't imagine a kid struggling with what we do. It's sad to hear. But here's the good news, there's still time for him to recover. He is still in his early stages. Don't give up hope! There is some light at the end of this tunnel!
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College Student in Information Technology and avid PC Gamer, hit the back of my head against a bunk bed and went unconscious for 3 minutes back in 10-28-2012.

Symptoms: Occipital Neuralgia.
2 MRI's and CT normal.

Currently going through Paxil withdrawals, and psych has me on L-Theanine, Benadryl for zaps, and Lemon Balm. It has eased it by a bit, so I am continuing the treatment till 1 month from now.

Made a 98% recovery on April 8, 2013 with only symptoms of pinched nerves/Occipital Neuralgia in the head and is being treated with injections and physical therapy.

Was experiencing:
Migraines, Headaches, Nausea and Vomiting, Panic Attacks and Anxiety, Depression, Major Insomnia, Brain Fog, Tinnitus, Lethargy, Loss of appetite, Major Heart Palpitations, Occipital Neuralgia has eased a bit.

Vitamins and Medicines: Wellbutrin XL 150mg, L-Theanine, Omega 3 Super DHA 900mg, Stress B-Complex Extra Strength, Potassium Gluconate 1000mg, Magnesium Malate 1250mg, Vitamin D3 2000 IU, Methylcobalamin B-12 5000 mcg, Vitamin C 500mg, Lemon Balm.

Things that helped me: My Vitamin Regimen, Medication, Earplugs (Love these!), Nature Sounds, Hydrotherapy, Neck Pillow with Heat, Heating Pads, Resting, Being Outside!
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Unread 02-12-2013, 05:37 PM   #6
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At 3 weeks and three days I am sure he feels as though it is an eternity. I do not know if this is valid but the neuro-psych had this to say about me. That recovery can be up to 2 years, I guess I really got conked on the head. That said, your son still sounds as though he may still in recovery. I would caution slow and steady. When symptoms present then ease up a little so as to not suffer a serious set back. There are sure to be ups and downs but if improvement is consistent over the long run...
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49, Male Married, PCS since June 2012, headaches, Back pain, neck pain, attention deficit, concentration deficit, processing speed deficit, verbal memory deficit, PTSD, fatigue, tinutitus, tremors.

To see the divine in the moment.
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Unread 02-12-2013, 11:40 PM   #7
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Thanks everyone.

Trying to take it day by day. Nothing gives me anxiety quite like parenting does, because there's so little I can control or protect him from.

I do my best though. If I could I'd have him in a helmet and bubble wrap every day.

He had a symptom free day today. Hoping for more...

Here's some irony, sort of:

Watching him for PCS symptoms has increased my own. Ugh. anxiety is not my friend.
__________________
About it: October 26, 2012 I fell backward on an icy parking lot at work. I was on Workers Comp for 9 months. My PCS : everyday headaches became once in a while headaches, and neck pain became manageable. Still have occasional mild dizziness, sometimes fullness in the ears, convergence insufficiency, sequencing struggles, short term memory struggles, verbal processing delays. CT neg, MRI neg. Therapies: prism glasses, acupuncture, icing neck, resting, supplementing, Elavil 20mg at bedtime.

NEW: Completed 12 weeks of physical therapy and returned to work full time.

About me: I'm a marketing manager, a mom with a blended family and wife to a heart attack survivor. I believe my brain injury taught me more than it cost me. I'm grateful to still be me!
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Unread 02-13-2013, 01:05 AM   #8
Mokey
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Great he felt better today! Day by day. For you, too!
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What happened: Legs pulled forward by a parent's hockey stick while resting at the side of the rink at a family skate....sent me straight back. I hit the back of my head (with helmet) on the ice, bounced a few times, unconscious for a few minutes. September 11, 2011. Off work since then…I work part-time at home when I can. It has been hell but slowly feeling better (when I am alone☺).

Current symptoms: Vision problems (but 20/20 in each eye alone!) – convergence insufficiency – horizontal and vertical (heterophoria), problems with tracking and saccades, peripheral vision problems, eyes see different colour tints; tinnitus 24/7 both ears; hyperacusis (noise filter gone!), labyrinthian (inner ear) concussion, vestibular dysfunction (dizzy, bedspins, need to look down when walking); partial loss of sense of smell; electric shocks through head when doing too much; headaches; emotional lability; memory blanks; difficulty concentrating. I still can’t go into busy, noisy places. Fatigue. Executive functioning was affected – multi-tasking, planning, motivation. Slight aphasia. Shooting pain up neck and limited mobility at neck. Otherwise lucky!

Current treatments: Vestibular therapy, Vision therapy, amantadine (100 mg a day), acupuncture and physiotherapy for neck, slow return to exercise, magnesium, resveratrol, omega 3 fish oils, vitamins D, B and multi. Optimism and perserverance.
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