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The only thing left is fatigue: prognosis?

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Unread 02-19-2013, 10:12 AM   #1
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Default The only thing left is fatigue: prognosis?

So glad I found you all--I was in a car accident 5 weeks ago yesterday and like everyone here got a concussion. I did have concentration difficulties, memory difficulties, etc--but I never really had headaches (just pressure, which I don't call a headache since it wasn't bad), nor did I have dizziness, double vision, unconsciousness, significant amnesia or nausea. All the same, my neuro called it a 'moderate' concussion based on his evaluation at the 2.5 week mark. At this point, all cognitive tests are very good (well above normal), and I have no problem reading or writing, but have that *******fatigue that shuts all systems down at the least hint of adrenaline use (i.e, one excited conversation with someone). Has anyone on here only had the fatigue remaining, and any clue what the prognosis is? Is fatigue alone one of those symptoms that can last forever? I REALLY want to resume my job since I was on fast track to being promoted but am very frustrated by this setback in my life. Any thoughts hugely appreciated.

Last edited by Chemar; 02-19-2013 at 11:17 AM. Reason: language guidelines
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Unread 02-19-2013, 11:42 AM   #2
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Location: Ontario, Canada
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I'm no expert by any means, and I'm sure one of them will give you their opinion, but I just wanted to say that I wouldn't worry and that you just probably need more rest. You're still so early since your concussion and have had such a wonderful recovery already! Any chance you can take a bit more time off of work to ensure a full recovery? If you overdo it now you can actually have a relapse and that would make it take even longer.

Good luck and try to get as much rest as possible, which of course means rest from all stimulation not just physical rest.

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 02-19-2013, 07:26 PM   #3
Mark in Idaho
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Welcome to NeuroTalk. Sorry to hear of your injury. Your fatigue will likely improve as you learn to moderate the excitement/activity levels. Many of us have a similar problem where we shut down cognitively from such events. It may help for you to read the thread with a link about NeuroEndocrine disorders. You may have badly cycling hormones, etc.

The promotion may be your goal but for the current time, you need to focus on getting control of your environment. You may need to moderate stress levels in your life for quite some time. Many of us have to be very careful about stress/over-stimulation levels.

It will also help to get your brain friendly diet/nutrition going. Check the Vitamin Supplements thread for info.

You have a good chance at a full life if you just learn how to live with a concussed brain.

Hope you can learn these skills and disciplines.

My best to you.
Mark in Idaho

"Be still and know that I am God" Psalm 46:10
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Unread 02-20-2013, 06:28 AM   #4
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My struggle with fatigue has been going on some 35 years post-trauma. The intensity fluctuates over broad cycles perhaps 2 years in duration. It'll be intense for a couple years (and I mean stay in bed and that's it; trips to the bathroom and trips to the kitchen are done on different days to conserve strength), then lighten up for a couple more years.

I would say that over the long stretch, the intensity has generally declined (with fluctuations). Currently I get about one intense but short-lived session a day, of an hour or so in duration, and I generally must sleep twice as long as most people ( a good 16 hours a day).

My gut feeling is that the fatigue situation will continue to improve, but will take time- I mean thinking in terms of decades, not years. Probably not what you want to hear, but remember your situation may be completely different from mine.
Passenger in auto wreck, mTBI:
  • MYALGIA (generalized muscle pain)
  • ANGER & SELF-CONTROL (going "Frontal")
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Unread 02-20-2013, 04:49 PM   #5
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My neurologist described it this way. Because part of my brain was injured, my brain is busy making new connections to go around the injured area. That burns a lot of calories and makes us tired. For me the concussion also triggered some sleep issues including sleep apnea, which meant I wasn't getting good sleep. I am sleeping better now and find I am less fatigued although I do have those moments from time to time when my brain shuts down. I've stopped trying to push through it if I can b/c it just makes the recovery time worse. Right now I am headed for a nap.
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