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Neurological Education: Concussions

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Dr. Jochims is passionate about caring for young athletes who have suffered from a head injury. As a parent of three children involved in soccer, football and basketball, he has seen a number of children significantly affected by the consequences of a concussion. Lingering symptoms may cause an athlete to miss a few days to several months of their sporting event and even school. Dr. Jochims has attended extensive continuing education courses on sports concussion through the American Academy of Neurology. As a neurologist, he is extensively experienced in treating the ramifications of a concussion, including headaches, dizziness, seizures and cognitive deficits.

Dr. Jochims utilizes concussion assessment tools, including the SCAT 3. He will work closely with your primary care doctor, athletic trainers and educational facility to make sure the athlete is properly cared for and transitioned back to play and school as soon as possible.

Signs & Symptoms of a Concussion

Nobody wants to leave a game. Often, an athlete is very stubborn and unwilling to cooperate in identifying any real problems. To their credit as a competitor, they wish to play on. With some sports injuries, this is entirely possible. With a concussion or a head injury, this is simply not the assumption that should be made! Regardless of the score and the player involved, it’s important as coaches, officials, parents and spectators to identify any real signs or symptoms. Below you’ll see signs that can be identified by a third party and symptoms that may be experienced by the athlete.

Signs of a Concussion

(What others see in an injured athlete)

  • Dazed or stunned appearance
  • Change in level of consciousness or awareness
  • Confused about assignment
  • Forgets plays
  • Unsure of score, game, opponent
  • Clumsy
  • Answers more slowly than usual
  • Shows behavioral changes
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Asks repetitive questions/memory concerns

Symptoms of a Concussion

(What the injured athlete feels)

  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Dizzy or unsteady
  • Sensitive to light or noise
  • Feeling mentally foggy
  • Problems with concentration and memory
  • Confused
  • Slow

Concussions & Other Sports Injuries

A concussion, head injury and other sports injuries can be serious. Why is it such a big deal all of a sudden? For years, athletes and common medical practice have often been at odds. The term “Rub some dirt on it and get back in there” was synonymous with being a warrior, a true athlete. Often, seeing a family doctor was merely a technicality and required step to alleviate liability of schools and coaches. Often the athlete, and parents of the athlete, would take the mild signs of a potentially deeper issue to be nothing more than part of the game.

In recent years, sports medicine and research have shown that the old way of thinking may not be the best for the long term well-being of the athlete. A concussion, even a mild one, can lead to immediate and permanent brain damage. Damage can be mild and may not seem important to some, but the effects could also be devastating. This is why it’s important to be able to identify a potential concussion. If a real and potential threat exists, it’s not only important – but mandatory – for the athlete to leave the game for a period of time.

Sports related concussion headaches

Concussions/Head Injuries

As a neurologist, Dr. Jochims has extensive experience in treating the ramifications of a concussion, including headaches, dizziness, seizures and cognitive deficits.

 

Image of SCAT3 Mobile.

SCAT 3 Mobile

The SCAT 3 is a standardized tool for evaluating injured athletes for concussion.

SCAT 3 measures symptoms, orientation, memory recall, balance and gait.

Dr Jochism

Dr. Sean Jochims, Neurologist

Dr. Sean Jochims graduated medical school with the prestigious Rick Wartgow Award for dedication to medicine. He also received Excellence in Teaching Awards as chief resident in neurology at the Medical College of Wisconsin.

Education
  • Medical School: Medical College of Wisconsin
  • Internship/Internal Medicine: Northwestern University
  • Clinical Neurophysiology Fellowship: Rush Presbyterian/St. Luke’s Medical Center, Chicago
  • Participant at Atlanta School of Sleep Medicine
Board Certifications
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