A concussion is a complex pathophysiological process affecting the brain that is induced by traumatic Bio-mechanical forces. Most cases occur due to sports injuries, car accidents, and head injuries. Concussion can result in both short-term and long-term impairment of neurological function and the possibility of significant neuro-pathological changes.
In sports-related concussion, most physical signs and symptoms such as nausea, visual disturbances, headaches, and balance changes will resolve within 2 to 7 days. Any symptoms such as fatigue, poor concentration, behavior changes, sleep pattern changes, and mood alterations that last longer than 7 days are categorized as Post-concussion Syndrome PCS.
Post-concussion syndrome can occur in up to 80% of people who have had a traumatic brain injury. The symptoms and signs includes anxiety, irritability, depression, sleep disturbance, fatigue, personality changes, decreased libido, memory impairment, cognitive impairment, learning problems, delayed information processing and reaction time, dizziness, vertigo, nausea, tinnitus, blurry vision, hearing loss, diplopia, diminished sense of taste and smell, and light and noise sensitivity.
At present, the standard treatments for PCS are rest, limiting exposure to possible additional brain injury, and treatment of symptoms as they occur. There is no specific treatment for concussion, but many have been attempted with generally limited success. These treatments include corticosteroids, free radical scavengers and antioxidants, drugs to inhibit arachidonic acid inflammatory response, and drugs that modify MAO function.
Treatments also used for PCS have included glutamate receptor antagonists, calcium channel blockers, thyrotrophin-releasing hormone, and hyperbaric oxygen therapy HBOT.
Recently, Harch’et al reported dramatic improvement in a series of 15 patients treated with HBOT 1.5 in a clinical trial of military acquired TBl. Functional brain scans continue to document results for HBOT 1.5 for combat-related, blast-related TBI.
Other individual trials also have demonstrated the efficacy and safety of HBOT 1.5 for chronic stable Traumatic brain injury. Substantial animal and human research now suggests that natural dietary supplements, vitamins and minerals, and the use of hyperbaric oxygen HBOT may be a better first-line choice for the treatment of PCS.
1 – Harch
PG et al Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Treatment of Chronic Mild-Moderate Blast-lnduced Traumatic Brain Injury/Post-Concussion Syndrome with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder: Pilot Trial. Presented at 8th World Congress on Brain Injury Washington DC, March L7, 2010.
2 – Harch
PG et al Low pressure hyperbaric oxygen therapy and SPECT brain imaging in the treatment of blastinduced chronic traumatic brain injury (post-concussion syndrome) and post ffaumatic stress disorder: a case report. Cases J. 2009 Jun 9; 2:6538.
3 – Hardy
Pet al Pilot case study of the therapeutic potential of hyperbaric oxygen therapy on chronic brain injury. J’Neurol Sci. 2007 Feb 15; 253(1-21:9a-105. Epub 2007 Jan 16.