Question: Years ago I learned from my doctor that after a severe concussion my vision in the right eye was not as good as it was before. This scared me away from following up, as I just decided I would rather not know why damage was done. Today I learned more on how the brain works and how it is set up, and the whole thing made me feel like I need to try too get more information. The severe concussion I mentioned was not my first or my last, but most likely my worse. (The upper part of my forehead had a large bump sticking out over an inch at least. And a few days later I had two black eyes). In addition to this injury, I would estimate that I have had another 8-12 injuries to the head. Some still severe and some not as bad. It has always worried me in the back of my mind but I chose to ignore it. I do get headaches, often very severe ones, but I just wouldn't allow myself to believe it could be something more. I do not know how exactly I should go about figuring all this out and any recommendations or information would be greatly appreciated.

Answer: I am sorry to hear of your concussion. Since it sounds like you are suffering from some of the effects of the concussion with your headaches and vision issues. I would suggest that you see your physician and/or a neurologist to get a complete work-up done. There is vision therapy that can be done to help with your vision issues and a neurologist might be able to determine the cause of your headaches. Rehabilitation for your brain injury may also be warranted. 


Question: I need help. Over these last two years, my concussion has invaded many aspects of many life, and mainly my career as an RN. I can not pass skills tests, get confused, lose words and thoughts, and much more. I've struggled with this for two yrs. I moved closer to my family, last month. Now I'm having difficulty finding a job because I can't pass the basic nursing tests. I have been as an RN for 37 yrs. I am so frustrated. I've seen a neurologist in FL, he administered a test three times, as I failed the first two ... then he gave me three answers on the third try. Can you see what's happening?

Answer: I am sorry to hear of your brain injury. It sounds as if you are still suffering from the effects of your injury. I would suggest that you see a neurologist where you currently live and take your previous medical records that document your concussion. It sounds like you need rehabilitation for your brain injury and a neurologist can make a referral for treatment. 


Question: I fell face down, several months ago in a parking lot, and sustained an acute concussion on my right frontal lobe. I tripped on a deep crevice in the pavement, between the parking lot and driveway to the grocery store. I was taken to the hospital by ambulance, and given a CT scan and xrays. I had a broken nose, and nothing else was broken. I still have a bump on my right forhead, above my right eye, which is tender and the skin has not grown back, so it is pink. I am experiencing sleep disturbance, either insomnia, or falling asleep unexpectedly, and general cognitive problems. I am anxious and depressed, and have difficulty initiating tasks. I have so much family responsibility i don't know when i will get better and it is hard to plan anything. It seems some of my symptoms are worse, or maybe more noticeable with time, and I am wondering how long I will have these? is there any kind of time frame as to how long it takes for them to improve? I also feel I need help, but do not know where to turn. I feel like my family does not understand, or believe me. I feel overwhelmed at this point. I am 59, and living on a fixed income. I am hoping these symptoms will go away or improve. Is there any medication to help improve my cognitive functioning? 

Answer: I am sorry to hear of your injury. From your description is sounds like you may have sustained a mild traumatic brain injury or concussion. Symptoms of a concussion/Mild TBI include sleep disturbances, memory and attention issues, anxiety, irritability, visual disturbances, etc. Most people who have sustained this type of injury will typically recover within 3 months. If you are still having these persistent symptoms and they are getting worse or not resolving, I would suggest seeing a neurologist (brain doctor) to get a work-up/evaluation for mild TBI and potentially a referral for some outpatient services for your brain injury. These services could include speech-pathology/cognitive rehab (this would help with the memory, attention issues), and occupational therapy to assist with any visual problems you may be having. Unfortunately, there is a not a medication that can assist with cognitive functioning. Rehabilitation is the best medicine we have so far for TBI. 

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