Headaches After Head Injuries — Post-Traumatic Headaches

Seymour Solomon, MD, Headache Unit, Montefiore Medical Center, Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Headaches After Head Injuries — Post-Traumatic Headaches

Headache immediately following a head injury usually clears after minutes or days but sometimes headaches may persist for months or rarely years. The long-term headaches are called post-traumatic or post-concussion headaches.

One can understand why headaches may follow a moderate or severe injury to the brain such as a concussion (bruise) or laceration (tear). What has been more difficult to understand and has presented an ongoing controversy are chronic headaches following mild head injuries.

Mild injuries of the brain are characterized as a concussion (a brief disturbance of brain function causing loss of consciousness or transient difficulty in thought processes).

Because the neurological examination after mild head injury is normal and standard tests as well as imaging studies (such as MRI or CT of the head) similarly fail to reveal abnormalities, many thought that the symptoms following mild head injury were psychological.

But microscopic studies have shown disruption of the nerve fibers in the brain due to the stretching or shearing forces of the trauma. Other subtle changes have been noted in brain functioning.

The clinical features of post traumatic headache may vary from one individual to another. Most headaches would be now classified as chronic tension-type headache. These headaches are typically a steady ache affecting both sides of the head and occurring daily or almost everyday. They are of slight to moderate intensity but intermittently, upon this base of low grade headache bouts of severe or moderately severe headache may occur and these often are similar to, if not identical with migraine (one sided throbbing pain associated with nausea and sensitivity to light and noise).

Unfortunately, people who experience post traumatic headaches also experience other symptoms of the post-traumatic or post-concussion syndrome. There may be other neurological symptoms such as dizziness, ringing in the ears, vague blurring of vision, psychological symptoms occur such as depression, anxiety, personality change, disturbance in sleep, and impairment libido.

Finally, people with the post-concussion syndrome have changes in their mental functioning, primarily difficulty in concentration, inability to work efficiently and associated difficulty maintaining attention and retaining memory.

The treatment of post-traumatic headache, as well as other features of the post-traumatic syndrome is symptomatic. That is each symptom is treated individually because, unfortunately, there is no medication that will alter the underlying disturbance in the brain.

Most often treatment of the chronic tension-type headache consists of such medications as the tricyclic antidepressants (for example amitriptyline). These agents not only diminish depression but also decrease pain.

The periodic worsening of headaches, if they have characteristics of migraine, are treated with typical migraine medications (for example, sumatriptan for an acute attack).

Non-drug methods of therapy are also advisable. Healthy habits should be encouraged by elimination of nicotine and alcohol, by recommendations for regularity with regard to sleep and meal time and by exercise at least every other day. Relaxation techniques may be helpful. These can be learned by biofeedback techniques as well as by such methods as meditation.

Last but not least is attention to psychological factors. The family, friends, and employer or teacher should be educated so the fact that headaches are not purely psychological but have a basis related to the disturbed structure and chemical functions of the brain. A psychologist may be helpful in teaching pain coping techniques and in treating the psychological symptoms that are part of the post-traumatic syndrome.

Fortunately, most headaches following head injury gradually taper off within the first three to six months. Even those unfortunate individuals who experience symptoms much longer can be helped.


Please remember, we are not able to give medical or legal advice. If you have medical concerns, please consult your doctor. All posted comments are the views and opinions of the poster only.

Posted on BrainLine December 15, 2008. Reviewed August 9, 2018.

About the Author

Dr. Seymour Solomon is a neurologist in Bronx, New York and is affiliated with multiple hospitals in the area, including Burke Rehabilitation Hospital and Montefiore Medical Center. He received his medical degree from Medical College of Wisconsin and has been in practice for more than 20 years. He is one of 41 doctors at Burke Rehabilitation Hospital and one of 78 at Montefiore Medical Center who specialize in Neurology.

From Help for Headaches. www.headache-help.org.

Comments (491)

Please remember, we are not able to give medical or legal advice. If you have medical concerns, please consult your doctor. All posted comments are the views and opinions of the poster only.

yo i really hope this doesn't last 6 months, i gave blood at school and 2 hours after i passed out due to low blood pressure, because i was passed out i do not know if i knocked my head but i lay down for an hour and then had to go, yet i had a head ache ALL that day, and ever since then thank you everyone...i have been getting one everyday. i am very sensitive to light and noise and temperature and really stressed out about things that usually don't stress me out. school has become very difficult and my exams are coming up.. i think i need to go to my doctor :O
About a month ago I was injured on the job. I was attacked by a patient at a campus for developmentally disabled adults. My head was slammed onto the floor..... I now get headaches everyday and some get so bad that I end up getting sick. Light hurts my eyes, trying to do paperwork (light duty) is frustrating, and I end up staring at a wall when people talk to me for a long time. The husband isn't very supportive because he said he got hit all the time in football as a teenager and was fine. I have young children so I can't rest like if like to. Im thinking of getting acupuncture. Anyone have luck with that? Any natural way of handling this?
Im so glad i found this. I had an work accident Aug 2012 I am 6' tall and i felt straight on my face i broke my left hand and smashed my face pretty bad. It was the biggest bang i ever heard when my head hit the concrete. I went into shock and started throwing up. Several hours later i went to the hospital and had a cat scan done and had my hand put in a temporary splint. The CT showed no mayor injuries so they told me I'm fine. They did not even say that i have an concussion and that i should stay home for a few weeks. So i only concentrated on my broken hand for the next 2 month. I went back to work 2 days after my accident on light duty. Looking back now i should had stayed home for 6 weeks and give my brain a rest. I had a headache everyday, and been told that is normal give it 6 month and everything is back to normal. 1 year later i still have a headache everyday. My memory is horrible i've been living Groundhog Day over and over. I make doctors apt always same day same time so i have 3 apt on Thurs at 10 until i remember and reschedule 2. Before the accident i could multitask ,i was good in math, i could solve 2-3 problems at the same time. Now i can do nothing anymore. I was in the middle of renovating my house. You have to be thinking 10 steps ahead putting in a bathtub or sink, i get stuck on the 1 thought and even if i make it to the 3rd thought its gone right after i stop thinking about it and the next day i have to start all over from scratch. This whole thing is so frustrating even little things like i wanna get up to get something by the time I'm standing i forgot what i was gonna get. In the middle of driving somewhere i forget how to get there. If you tell somebody they say 'oh your getting old' . My first doctor try to tell me that I'm depressed and i told her no i am not depresses I'm totally frustrated, and that i would like to see a neurologist. That is 10 month after accident. That apt was the best, the doctor actually knew what i was going thru, she said that all my little shortcuts that your brain creates probably are gone and that my brain will create new once but it will take some time. She suggested acupuncture but l&i doesn't pay for that so i went for cranial pressure point massage to get rid of my headaches, but i still have headaches. My pressure that i had every morning got better. Im maybe lucky that i have no migraines, just an headache, that i got use to living with without meds. Will go for acupuncture in the next few weeks. I will call my insurance to see how much my copayment is. I have big hope for that, if it works i will come back to this site and update on it. I hope everybody will find what works for them. Don't give up
In 2004 I was involved in a head on collision and when the wreck was discovered i was unconcious and my head was in the windsheild. I do not remember a lot from this wreck or even after the wreck. I was in and out of consiousness and at the hospital they said I only had a concussion and treated and released me. about six months after the wreck I started getting these extremely bad headaches and here I am almost ten years later and I still get these headaches and can barely function when i have one. I have been to several doctors and they all just tell me to take tylenol or the generic and seem to blow me off. After finding this site today I will be going back to a doctor to see if it is possible that this could be a long lasting after effect of my car wreck because before that I hardly ever got headaches and know i get them everyday and sometimes several times a day. This site was very helpful.
Hi I was in a motorcycle accident in 2008 it has now been almost 5 years. I still get headaches all the time. Blurred vision and short term memory loss. A car pulled out in front of me I was riding my 1 year old 2007 gsxr. I Hit the back break nothing, down shifted with the front break NOTHING. I flipped and crushed the car with the bike smashing me into the drivers side door. I broke my back,8 ribs, punctured my right lung, fractured my neck, broke all my fingers ripping my left ring finger off. I broke my left wrist and hand. I hit so hard I jammed my elbows, shoulders wrists and hands. I had a lot of road rash also. I have also lost my job, friends, and loved ones due to the nature of my accident. The woman who caused the accident didn't have good insurance at all. The insurance had $27,000.00 coverage. I cry sometimes because I know im not what I use to be. I use to love life so much more and was a real strong FREE person. Now sometimes I get scared to go out of the house. Thank you all for posting all the situations that you all have encountered. I know there are alot of people like me out there and feel the same way that I do. I also think that I have been misdiagnosed. I hit so hard I broke my full face helmet down the right side and could pull it apart. My head actually hurts atm and I pray to god that it would stop. I know life has its ups and downs and to live is to feel pain. It would just be a lil easier to deal with if I knew it was my fault that im like this. Its very hard for me sometimes and now im diagnosed with severe depression as a result of the accident. Thnx for reading keep ur head up and smile that's what its all about =D
I just found this site and am dealing with a relatively new head injury. My son fell off a scooter and hit his head and bled from the ear. Then, on the way to the hospital to get that checked out, the car he was in was hit by a drunk driver. He had a temporal skull fracture and bleeding in the brain -- a few days later he developed partial facial paralysis. We are 3 weeks out. He is home from the hospital, still having headaches, and trying to figure out what his life will look like now -- he is 16 -- was a straight a student and played multiple sports -- now we are not sure. If anyone has any advice -- looking back on your own journey -- of what you would have done differently at this point, I would love the advice. It's just so hard to know what to do -- they tell you to just rest...but maybe we should be doing more.
Interesting. In 1968, age 11, I flew over the handlebars of my bicycle and landed on my head (and face). The concussion was severe enough (I was unconscious on and off for four hours or more; I don't remember!, and the days afterward are pretty much a blur since I slept through them) that they delayed surgery to repair my broken upper maxila for two days and would wake me up every fifteen minutes for the first 24 hours. Fast forward to about 2003 when I really remember getting headaches (especially with just before we get rain) that feel as though my head is in a vice. The entire top of my head feels almost crawly and the front of my head simply hurts, like a dull deep pain, especially over my eyes. Usually on days like that, all I can do is take a nap. Even as I write this on the umpteenth day of rain, the top of my head seems crawly, and have taken naps three days in a row. I was tested for mold and mildew allergies in 2002 to try to explain the headaches... now I am beginning to wonder if they are all connected to this long-ago concussion. Add to that someone saying to me the other day that my face is assymetrical almost as though I have Bell's palsy. So I am surfing the web to see if perhaps this all is connected to my severe concussion so many years ago.
Two weeks ago i was sitting on a desk at school and was pushed off by a friend. I hit my neck and my head on another desk when i fell. I don't remember the first minute or two afterwards, but i remained conscious. I have had a not stop headache for these two weeks, and i still feel nauseous, irritable and unable to eat much. I went to the doctor the day after it happened and he said it was just muscle damage to my neck. I can't concentrate on my school work or social life, and painkillers don't help with the headaches. Should i get it checked out again?
I had a mild head injury in which I did not black out. CT scan found no evidence of injury. After two months of severe headaches, I discovered that if I ate some breakfast before coffee in the morning, no headaches. Coffee first = headaches.
I am a 47 year old male with a history of concussions from sports as a kid. Even had a fractured skull. Then last July was at a complete stop and rear ended at an estimated 60-70 mph. Was instantly in a fog. Have been suffering through concussion symptoms for months. Lost my job because of it. Through vision therapy and physical therapy have very slowly started to feel a little better. But if I try to live a "normal life" I apparently stress my brain and then the symptoms worsen very quickly. This is going on a year now and extremely frustrating and depressing. I am one of the lucky ones. They tell me I will eventually get completely better. But it takes time and a lot of patience. And the hardest part is trying to not let the depression run your life.
In 2001 I was in a industrial accident resulting in me having a TBI. My left ankle, left knee, left shoulder, lost 4 teeth, left eye damaged and nose half tore off my face. 11 days in a induced coma, 23 months in rehab. Today I am aware of the memory problems I have. Most of all I seem to have daily headaches or migraines. Being in denial I have resisted help for this but recently because of the migraines I am seeking help.
Hi I had a horse riding accident about 3 years ago now. I have never suffered with migraines.... in fact hardly had a headache until then. I fell face first ended up with two black eyes and concussion that lasted 2 weeks. Stupidly I didnt go to the hospital as I should have and for a while after I was ok but about 3 months post accident my first migraine occured. I get what i call flashing lights first....sort of like lightening strikes that glitter starting out at the centre of my eyes and growing towards the sides. So far I can control my pain with prescriptions from the doctors (almogran)as I get the warning signs I take a tablet and the pain never emerges. I can get migraines for up to 5 or 6 days in a row, a one off or not have one for a year and then continually have them for a while. No pattern whatsoever, no stress, no caffeine, cheese, chocholate etc been through all the lists IT JUST HAPPENS!!!
My 15 y/o daughter suffered a concussion (blacked out for 1 minute) playing soccer in August 2012. At the time I was very ignorant about concussions. She wanted back in the game so the coach and refs allowed her to. Afterward, took her to the ER where they put her in a room for 4 hours, then released her. Never once checked on her. Since then. have had MRI, CT scan. Been to numerous drs. She suffers daily headaches, was a straight "A" student(grades have dropped considerably), was hoping for a lacrosse scholarship (is not allowed to play any sports), and has basically lost all of her friends. She has memory issues, light and noise sensitivity, etc. Have started with a new dr who has diagnosed her with "occipital neuralgia". Started treating with injections yesterday after 2 weeks of meds didn't work. Fingers crossed!!
Hi my name is Deborah Berry and I sustain a tbi after a car accident in 1997. I suffered with serious headaches for years. I couldn't move my face or even smile they were so terrible. No one could figure out why? LOL I laugh because now I know what I know now about my body and the body it makes sense. I turned my head 180 degree's my spinal cord was twisted.. I had several herniated disks and a brain injury. The disks in my spine where cutting into my spinal cord stopping blood flow and causing serious nerve pain and damage. It took me years to have my skull and spine adjusted through various methods, natural therapies, health eating... and a healthy lifestyle - with the determination to be well. It was not east but it is possible to heal from PTSD and a TBI.
I've unfortunately had several types of injuries to the head. First, I fell from a top bunk in college ten years ago, smacked my head on the hard floor, felt nauseous, and crawled to the bathroom, thinking I'd be sick. Nothing happened, crawled back to my room, went back to bed. (Yes, on the top bunk. My roommate was not in town yet, though, luckily.) It took a few weeks, but I finally started to get a migraine that would not relent, no matter what I did. I missed half a semester of classes because I couldn't go outside unless I absolutely had to (such as to buy groceries for my dorm room, since I couldn't keep going out so much for the dining halls, and then obviously to see the doctor). When I told the doctor about my fall, she said I suffered a concussion and should have gone in sooner, because I could have had a subdural hematoma. Scans showed nothing, Imitrex made my skull feel like it was cracking open, and I had to hide myself away for three months before the pain finally started to subside. And then, in October 2008, my parents and I were rearended by a drunk driver when we were at a full stop and he just kept right on going into us, pushing us forward into a divider barrier wall between the directions of traffic. My head started to hurt immediately after impact...but scans showed there was no damage to the head. Turns out the back and side of my head hurt because the soft tissues attached to the skull were damaged, fibers ripped, and it was not actually trauma to the brain. Now, in March 2013, I have recurring head and neck pain, sometimes in the location of the car accident injuries, sometimes in the location of the concussive injury. It's amazing how it seems to continue on, no matter how long the time has passed. What's especially amazing is how the pains in each location can feel exactly as they did immediately following their respective incidents, just at a lower intensity. It allows me to know that it must be affiliated with the earlier incidents instead of worrying that they might be a whole new problem. It's just incredibly frustrated sometimes to wonder, "Why is it starting to hurt now? What did I do?" Because usually, I'm not doing anything particular and it will just start to hurt, no reason.
Almost 30 years ago I suffered a traumatic brain injury as an 18 year old, just a kid. I was life-flighted to Las Vegas and spent almost 4 days in a coma. My life has changed greatly since. Many people that were close to me, especially the love of my life, couldn't deal with the new me. I lost so much through that accident. After fighting for years with seizures and black outs, I am now battling daily chronic head pain, cluster migraine disease, and some residual neurological problems. I have been very fortunate given the circumstances. With life alterations and many hospital stays, I have been able to be a successful attorney/public administrator in high level criminal justice policy. I am married to the real love of my life and have 7 amazing kids. However, I am not aging well with my injured brain. I was forced to take disability and am barely hanging on at times. I am hospitalized on a regular basis. This trial has brought out the absolute best in many people, mostly family. However, it has also brought out the absolute worst in others, including siblings. My oldest brother, a clergy, has many times told me that my sufferings are a result of wrongdoing. He is a cold hypocrite. He is a cruel man deep down and I pity him and his wife. I have made some mistakes, but I have lived a good life. My sister, the judge, has done much in her power to throw hurdles in my way and has secretly made unbelievable surreptitious efforts to destroy my marriage and family. She is mentally ill following a courageous battle with cancer, but the chemo wracked and ruined her mind to the point of serious psychosis. Yet, other siblings and my parents and spouse and kids have been patient and compassionate. The bottom line is that I don't know if i can bare being this ill for the rest of my life. It is so destructive in so many ways. It has taught me much, made me more compassionate and patient. I pray I can endure this. May all of your lives be happy despite the deep tribulations with head trauma. I am sorry to hear of your accounts and sufferings. Let's all stay strong. We have greater capacity than we will every know.
So, in June 2009 I was involved in my 9th IED and this one was an EFP. While my truck was not hit directly (much) I was the gunner and from what I recall I saw the flash and heard the "boom" but never actually "felt" anything unlike all of the previous times. The reason for this was that I was knocked out I guess from what everyone told me. ANYWAY this was just the back story, the reason that I am commenting is because of the time frame that it occurred was such a long time ago and I still have tremendous headaches, memory is still sketchy (depending on the day), I still have symptoms that persist and from what I am reading it does appear that it is somewhat normal for those diagnosed with mTBI to have persistent symptoms for years does that sound correct?
thanks for sharing yr story. I was a chaplain for 12 yrs until last apr --fell and hit my head --2 wks later had what i know now was post concussion. misdiagnosed about my balance problem -- now have white matter disease probably from 2 prior falls which has robbed me of my emotions, faith, etc. now stay with my daughter-- am very discouraged. was highly functioning with master of divinity degree. had shunt last august for hydroenceph and balance problems ---was totally misdiagnosed. my life is ruined!!!!!
I just had a fall last week and I had no idea I even hit my head but, now my head has been hurting for a week, I just wanted to find out if I was going to be stuck with a headache from now on? This really sucks. The pain is bad. This info is really helpful and I will be going back to the doc.
In 2011 i had a head injury due to a door being broken and me walking into it which caused a concussion/whiplash type injury.I suffered a poor memory with headaches and all lights made my eyes strain and everything go dull.These symptoms lasted a couple of months and slowly subsided. 15 months later and they reapeared again with no warning and i had 9 weeks off work due to the crushing feeling around my temples and all down the front of my face and eyes. I also had facial sweating really bad,loss of balance and my eyes were playing havoc and i couldn't focus on anything without it looking wavey. I had an mri scan and was treated for facial neuralgia, tmj and stress related headaches whilst awaiting the results.The results came back ok which was a big relief and i have now been diagnosed as having top of the chart chronic migraines!!! I always thought migraines were for a few hours or days at the most but mine last all day and all night with no let up on the pain scale.I sometimes think doctors diagnose people with something so they go away and believe all is well when its clearly not.Most of my days are blurry and sometimes i think no one understands my symptoms because they cant see them.Has anyone else been told they look ok so they must feel ok and stop being a hypocondriac and take these tablets and the pain will go away? Has anyone had cluster headaches who could give advice on what they are experiencing and what the pain is like? Im at my wits end not fully knowing if i have migraines but it seems im not the only one suffering in silence in this world! My thoughts go out to each and every one of you and keep going as one day we may see end to the misery we face each time we open our eyes in a morning! xx
I'm 21 and nearly five months ago I experienced a severe concussion due to a bad ice hockey hit. The first three months was filled with continuous head pains, confusion in minor problems and an inability to read. I saw several doctors, all saying different theories, until I finally went to an optician in regards to my suddenly poor eye-sight, turned out I pulled muscles within my eye sockets and my eyes had become strained. I had gone from a student with perfect eye sight to suddenly requiring glasses. I also found emotions triggered my head pains further, and also stress. 5 months later and I'm back playing ice hockey, I still get the pains occasionally and whenever I feel angry or sad my pains flare up. It has been hard trying to get people around me to understand the hardships of balancing concussion with university, fighting through the pain just to ends meet with essay deadlines. I wish doctors had been more helpful and I also wish my friends and family were more sympathetic. I don't have the 'bubble-effect' that I had experienced the first 3 months, but I still feel very isolated and introverted in my life. An odd side effect I've noticed is my ability to comprehend and revise more efficiently. I've certainly improved in my essay writing. An odd thing I know.
i know iam not alone well that doesent help me any igot clubed in the head with a bat 8 times i didnt even know what happened to me tell somebody told me months later just writing this is realy hard i cant keep appointments becuase i forget them i cant drive very far because i get sooo sick, and realy theres knowbody out there that wants to help me i got a cat scan but never heard back from the doctor and ihave tryed too contact him many times time too shrivele up mark
At age 42 I was hit in the head from a professional soccer coach accidentally. My life has been 30 months of pure hell. To any of you going to see Neurologists ? stop !! they are completely useless and fail to understand or believe what you are suffering. I have tried all the prescriptions, followed all the doctors have told me and found myself feeling worse than when this originally happened. My faith in Western medicine is lower than that ant you just stepped on. The little bits of progress I have received come from accupuncture and maybe a little bit of massage. Trying Reikii tomorrow as I have nowhere else to turn. I have a headache 24 hours a day all the time !! Never had a headache in my life before this accident, and fail to understand why this occured.
Hello I am glad to found this info. However I surely struggele to read it after my injury 8months ago. I was electricuted while welding. I have been litely shocked before but nothing like this. Symptoms have persisted and I have been diagnosed with a panic disorder. My belief is that the Panic came on due the memoery loss, fatigue,etc.... on and on and on. I live alone and am struggling to maintain now that I am home from trearment for the Panic Disorder. i definitely will refer to this more. Thankyou.
Our family has also been suffering thru the rigamoro post TBI. We are 8 years out and our 17 yr. old son is finally getting a little relief with oxygen therapy. We have been thru the gambit of drugs, side effects from all the drugs and being sent from doctor to doctor. He is now being seen at a university headache clinic, which is also checking his pituitary gland for deficits in its function, as well as treating him with oxygen therapy. Please don't give up, but utilize all the services and expertise you can find to help make life manageable for yourself or loved-one. We are not out of the water by any stretch of the imagination, but at least we are now able to tread water and hopefully float someday.
Thank you so much for this information, I finally feel as if I could be on the road to recovery. 15 months ago I fell from my horse, having post concussion and getting referred to the Head injury clinic. Although I was at this specialist clinic, I was NEVER inspected by a nureologist. Their tests and examinations were only making my symtoms worse (nausia, vision, speech, concerntration, moods, memory and of coarse the intense headaches) so I was discharged and told me I\'d come right. I then started Uni, only for all my symtoms to get worse, I was in bed for days on end while trying to study. The hardest part was no one could understand what was wrong with me because what we all suffer from is something you can not see. I find this the most frustrating thing because only the suffer really knows how much pain and suffering they go through. I decided to see a new doctor who was amazing, he still didn\'t quite understand but was committed to help make my life a little brighter. Medication was the only thing he could do, even though the antidepressent drugs hide the problem, I was still very grateful that someone finally wanted and could help me. Then 2 months ago I suffered a collapse, causing all my symtoms to increase even more than before. My mum was so worried she sent me straight to the doctor, only to be turned away with more medication and told to just keep pushing on, you\'ll come round. My mother was furious and demanded a MRI scan, which was eventually done, to only find it was clear. I was relieved that nothing major was wrong, but also heart broken that I had no more answers and felt more alone than ever. I could not understand that no one could tell me why I was in so much pain all day every day. Its been a hard long road these past 15 months, but with this information it has given me some guidance with my illness. Please, if anyone out there is feeling the same way, you\'re not alone. I have got very depressive and not seeing whats the point in being on this earth when you are in so much pain and misery. Remember, you\'re not alone :) xx
I can relate to almost every post I read from other posters. I had a head injury when I was 19; that was 6 years ago already. LONG JOURNEY! let me tell ya. Still going… How does one get healing when all of the doctors are MORONS!? I was apparently jumped & mugged one night. I say apparently because I still to this day have no recollection of any time around than. $40 is what they got from me and left me for dead. Concussion, internal bleeding & bruising, fractured skull. Unfortunately it took 6 hours before I arrived to a hospital. 8 Hours to gain consciousness. Doctors wanted to cut my skull open to relieve pressure, blood ect. My mother got a 2nd opinion from another doctor, who said try not to do it, more long term issues. Same went for drilling a hole in skull. Thankfully they did not do it. I think I was shipped out within 24 hours of arrival. Sent home. Sleep it off I guess… Got some MRI's, CT scans. Doctors all basically say could be both ends of spectrum on recovery & long term issues/disabilities. Why do you get the dam scans if they cant tell anything? Zap us with more radiation & free $ probably??? Doctors after doctors. All say the same thing, "6 months to recover" for post head injury. Chronic headaches till this day. Anxiety, depression, poor concentration, lack of any motivation, and for the past year, "what’s the point of living" thoughts; probably because not able to progress in life, and Social security is hard for many disabled people. Catch 22. My aftermath disabilities: Anxiety, Depression, Dyslexia, Chronic Headaches/Migraines, Lack of Concentration(ADD/HD), Lack of motivation, Speech Impairment, Frustration/Anger Issues with task, Loss of desire to eat, hard to get to sleep-once asleep I sleep for 12-24hrs+, Feelings of unconnectivity to this reality. Sad life. I think it would be easier if I hadnt been on a path for a very bright future in any avenue I chose. Better to have had than to never had is a lie. Stuck in this black hole for too long. I don’t see the way out any longer. //// I love this site. I have learned more in the last 10min than 6 years of doctors. WOW. Basically Have all the symptoms, so it is pretty clear what I have been suffering from & why now. Nice to have an answer to why I am suffering finally. Only resolution I can get from doctors is depr/anxiety pills, counseling... It's like they dont even see the causes, or past history, just a word, and each word has a drug to give patient. I believe my circumstances to the symptoms are different than the general population. None of that shit will every work or heal me or most others. Only mask the problems from my experience. Although I do think my issue is chemical imbalance or possibly damage which results in these symptoms. I could sustain more head damage and still be more intelligent than most of these doctors Ive seen. Most of them smart dumb people, book worms. Robots! Repeat after me…Basically for the past 3 years I sought medical marijuana and have not had chronic headaches, or migraines in 3 years. Besides the occasional stressed out headache. I have no luck with aspirin, vikidin, or migraine pills. Still been seeking better fixors for my other symptoms, but no luck still. I dont see the difference in substance consumption. Everything in this world including food is a drug/substance that our bodies process for benefit(s). I can say medical Mar. is not helping my anxiety or depression any. I am in a catch 22 because without it headaches again, I dont eat, & I cant get to sleep. I really want to resolve the anxiety & depression, & motivation issues. Big dreams, as always, but stuck in that black hole still, alone. When I look at all my issues/disabilities, my head spins. Overwhelming. If we were all puppets, I’d be missing a few strings. I just want to perform like everyone else again. Toss me a few strings please! Maybe I should just be happy I have any strings at all…
If you are suffering from daily headaches after suffering a concussion or head trauma, please check Dr. Ivica Ducic's (Georgetown University Hospital) website. My son is finally headache free after surgery to fix the nerve damage that occurred from the head injury.
my daughter was hit in the head during a soccer game. I was not at the game and nothing was said to me about how hard she was hit by her or my husband. 4 weeks later she was hit in the back of the head with a basketball during a game and seemed fine. She already had headaches prior to that but the headaches got worse. She was sick to her stomach feelinglike she was going to throw up so I took her into the doctor. they said she needed more acid reflux medication and it would go away. She was still palying basketball keeping up a full schedule at school until one day she could not deal with the pain anymore. I told her in again and they said she had a concussion. Stop palying sports for awhile and everything would be fine. It was not fine. She ended up being taken out of school and still not gone back. We took her to a specailist in a city 2 hours away. He gave her a test said she was processing very slow and that she had had at least 2 concussions. We are dealing with this day by day. She had a MRI and they found a bleed deep in her brain that had sealed itself off. This has been 2 months and some days I think she is fianlly on the road to recovery and then the next day she is worse. Noe she is getting the sharp stabbing pains on the right ide of her head, she is so tired all the time. It is heart breaking to watch and others who havve not gone through it just don't understand how hard it is to watch a 15 year old extremely smart and very athletic go through this.
this information was very helpful to me it seems to me when i fell and hit my head on two concrete steps and then the concrete ground when i was very little ive been having worsening headaches and ive been losing my memory and im only 16 ... i dont know if that accident had anything to do with my symptoms now but im certianly telling my doctor next time i see him maybe he could give me and MRI and see whats going on there .... because ive also been having like thies brain pops/spasms that wont go away .
Thank you very much for this information. I'm 71. Had my fourth concussion in Sept 2012. Have also had familial hemiplegic migraines since I was about 13 so I can't safely take Sumatriptan. I'm reading a book which relates some of the same info about why recovery takes time: Brain Lash: Maximize Your Recovery from Mild Brain Injury. It's hard having patience sometimes.
Thank you for this website. It is re-assuring being able to read about all the symptoms being relatively common. I am having a lot of them and reading that they are part of the normal process is comforting. I had a motorcycle accident 2 months ago. The head pain varies but some weeks like this one is pretty consistent. Thank you for the re-assuring website. I'm believing in the 6 month mark for everything being better.
I have a child who was injured at home by a fall. It has been a 3 1/2 year nightmare. Ranging from the hospital thinking it was a basic concussion and not doing much and releasing her. Told it could take up to a year for a concussion to hear. Kept taking her back to the ER because of debilitating daily level 10 headaches we were still told it could take up to a year to resolve. I took her to a neurologist 10 months into it and found she had a TBI. Thought we were on the right road now. Had a neuropsychology appt and they said that they didn't feel she had a TBI due to a negative MRI. So her care was barely existent because they were to base her care on this evaluation. I took her to another doctor out of state who spent nearly 5 hours with her and found the multitude of symptoms and problems that we had been feeling she had. He told us that she has a TBI, a skull fracture and whiplash which kept her with all of the symptoms we had been seeing. The out of state doctor got us connected with a team back in our state. They then proceeded to drop the ball yet again on her. It even included dropping the ball on a neuroendrocrine evaluation which hadabnormall results and them calling to tell us all was normal and fine and to come back in a year. It has been a total uphill battle and I think a LOT of things need to change. I think it needs to start right at the beginning at the hospital in respect to TBI. Better education and protocols need to be in place to help TBI survivors and family members. More education for the hospitals, doctorspsychologiststs etc. Also more communication needs to happemonistst their own teams. I can't even believe for a second that two physicians on the same team can differ so widely and stall a patients care. Our story is a LOT longer than this and more compliacted with a lot of problems and obstacles, tried to keep it short. Make sure you keep searching for answers, if it doesn't feel write go to another doctor, dig deep anywhere and everywhere for answers, do your own homework and arm yourself with knowledge. We have come a long way and she has made a lot of progress. This has been from researching and advocating for ourselves, exploring options, seeking out doctors with really good credentials and who specialize in the things we feel we need to address. We're still researching a lot of the symptoms but feel we are getting a lot closer to real answers on some of the issues that involve level 10 daily headaches, sleep problems, tachychardia and much more. I wish you all good luck and God speed with your healing and recoveries. Keep searching and NEVER EVER give up!
Cranial sacral therapy check it out! works well. Head and neck injuries are tied together. L'hermittes syndrome ( that electric shock feeling) happened to me after my concussion and neck injury just leaning forward in a seated position. I am still dealing with headaches 2 years post concussion. Various drugs just made my symptoms worse. Accupuncture and massage therapy with a Cranial Sacral Massage therapist made a huge difference in my balance, cognition and pain management. After a few sessions of Cranial sacral therapy I felt like I was starting to get back to being me again. He also taught me ways of easing the headaches without meds. The headaches are still there but I am able to keep the pain at a manageable level. write everything down. our memories suck.
My husband has been diagnosed with Post Concussion Syndrome stemming from a head injury in June. We have been working closely with neurologists, speach therapist, and physical therapist. It has now been almost 5 months and we see his symptoms worsening. His headaches are intensifying, along with the nausea, light sensitivity, and sound. He is experiencing a lightning bolt shock several times a day now in the area of the injury with intense headaches and pressure. The current answers seem to be increase the dosage, and start a pain management regimen. I'm concerned that something else is going on. If anyone could provide suggestions of things to look into we would greatly appreciate it.
Due to post traumatic head & neck injuries, I live with a complex range of symptoms of arthritis of the head neck jaw bones. Trigeminal nerve issues have only just been diagnosed after many years. The trigeminal nerve is being triggered by several factors which has made life challenging. There is so little info out there about trigeminal neuralgia yet. I have learned most of what I know through other patients, as the text books I have read don’t give a full spectrum of age cause & all the symptoms. So few Doctors have little or any knowledge & can be most dismissive with people in great pain. Brain injury is hard enough without being written off due to an overall ignorance of a multifaceted organ like the brain. Keep a very open mind GP’S & the right questions will then be found.
My son was in an automobile accident in 2008. He has a brain stem bleed and a slight stroke. He has a headache almost everday. The most severe are at the base of the neck. Nothing seems to help. Any suggestions?
My husband had a fall May 29, 2011. He went thru 4.5 months of a concussion. It was pretty severe, not damage as for the reports would say, and yes in time the headaches and such went away. The only "brain" damage that I can notice (thank heavens) is a slight loss of hearing, and not as much as hearing loss, but you have to actually look at him or yell or get his attention when talking to him. Hes not really bad, but if there are other noises going on, you have to speak up, or actually get him to look at you. After the concussion in time he got better, at first he couldnt be in loud busy places, but a year later he is fine. Untill yesterday am. He woke up with a severe headach (i call it his concussion headache) and it hasnt gone away. There was no "triggers" that we can see. NO hitting of the head, no places where there was loud music, and such. So now I am a bit scared as yes he is missing work, that these headache may keep coming back periodically over his life? Is this a normal occurance? Is it maybe a migrain? we dont know as we have never had this before, and he hates taking medication of any kind. Any words of wisdom is appreciated.
Thank you for sharing your story,my daughter suffered a sport related concussion while at school. The school of course tried to cover up the accident by lying, we eventually discovered the truth but it doesn\\\\\\\'t change the fact my daughter recieved a concussion, spent 5 days in the hospital in misery, as a result was diagnosed with a TBI and now 5 months later is still sufferring from post concussion syndrome. I felt crazy at times because it is hard to pinpoint all facts especially if you never experienced a TBI or known anyone who has gone through it. Its very frustrating for everyone involved. Its been a life changing event for not only my 10 year old daughter but our entire family. My daughter is currently seeing a speech pathologist, TBI specialist, Neurologist, neuro- spychologist, physical therapist, and we are trying to get her in to some therapeutic stuff as well. It wasn\\\\\\\'t without a battle though. I dont think people can\\\\\\\"t really understand and want to tell you how its \\\\\\\"supose\\\\\\\" to happen but nothing they told us has been accurate. She will recovery in 3-6 months...not true its been 5 and finally everyone realizes its worse than \\\\\\\"usual\\\\\\\". I have tried to be my daughters advocate but its difficult when you have no idea yourself how to handle the sittuation. I felt like I had to convince people too.. I finally told the dr.\\\\\\\'s you may have hundreds of patients but this is my one and only daughter and I know her better than anyone NOW listen to us!!!. Dont underestimate your point of view, fight for yourself!!
At 16, I was in the passenger seat when our VW was hit by a drunk driver who ran a stop sign. I did a header through the passenger window (even though I had a seat belt on) my thick wool hat probably saved my life. I received a severe side impact head/neck injury. I'd never had a headache before then. Since the injury (after which I'd received EEG's confirming brain damage and more recently MRI's that showed a small lesion on the right side of my brain). The specialist doctors who treated me at the time seemed to be trying to prove that I was a liar and making up all my symptoms. I suppose they were being paid by the insurance of the woman who hit me, and I imagine they assumed we would sue. We did not. But if you find yourself in similar situations please make sure the doctors who treat you are on your team. Frankly, considering how severely my life was impacted by this injury, no amount of money would have made up for the loss of a promising life of creativity and productivity. All my symptoms were as listed in this article along with a few more. In addition to vision disturbances, chronic migraine headaches, ringing in the ears, nausea, difficulty concentrating, difficulty doing certain types of thinking which I'd been skilled at previously, and reduced emotional resilience, I also suffer from balance disturbances, and occasional totally incapacitating vertigo. I had been quite an easy going happy teenager (I know that's hard to believe but true) previously. I had been a straight A student with excellent rapport with teachers and peers. It has now been 20+ years since the accident. I have had more than 50 short term jobs in my life. I haven't lost jobs due to behavioral problems, but rather because of the amount of sick days I required. I could not work on those migraine days, and at least 3 or 4 per month was enough to let me go, or suggest I find another field. I can't take exposure to hardly any strong smells or chemicals, nor can I even handle riding in a car over bumps. Recently those 3 or 4 per month have become 2-4 per week, so now I can no longer hold any job. In addition to arthritic bone growth in my neck, which cause more pressure on nerves in my cervical spine, MRI's also showed an old lesion in my brain. No preventatives, pain medications or any of the 'Triptans' taken at onset seem to help at all anymore. I am all but totally house-bound and bed-ridden. I've been coping with this for decades, but now feel like there is very little to keep me going. Despite all this I was rarely depressed until recently. For anyone else reading this, if you have a TBI, take it seriously immediately when it happens and don't let anyone, doctors or family, belittle you or make you feel like you are imagining your symptoms. Keep at it until you find someone (doctors and therapists) who will help you. No one took my injuries seriously, until it was far too late. Now at 45 there is nothing anyone can do, even the wonderful specialists at Mayo Clinic who finally took me seriously and at least validated that my symptoms were based on something real.
This information was very helpful and it definately educated me more on this condition, which my daughter is suffering from at age 15. Thanks