On Tuesday I saw my family doctor, to have him remove the staples from the head wound I suffered in the Great Fainting Episode of March 4 (see my “vasovagal syncope” posting, here) and talk about my condition since then. It’s been slow and difficult going: unsteady on my feet (for several days I went back to using my cane to get around), terribly tired, sleeping badly, not always thinking clearly (lots of trouble recalling names), little appetite, and so on.

The CT scan at Stanford showed no brain injury, but my doctor said I had clearly suffered a concussion — he recalled a concussion from his own experience — and that it would be a slow recovery. I’m supposed to take things easy and not push myself. Not easy for me.

From Wikipedia:

Concussion, from the Latin concutere (“to shake violently”) or concussus (“action of striking together”)] is the most common type of traumatic brain injury. The terms mild brain injury, mild traumatic brain injury (MTBI), mild head injury (MHI), minor head trauma, and concussion may be used interchangeably, although the last is often treated as a narrower category. Although the term “concussion” is still used in sports literature as interchangeable with “MHI” or “MTBI”, the general clinical medical literature now uses “MTBI” instead. In this article, “concussion” and “MTBI” are used interchangeably. Frequently defined as a head injury with a temporary loss of brain function, concussion causes a variety of physical, cognitive, and emotional symptoms, which may not be recognized if subtle.

Treatment involves monitoring as well as physical and cognitive rest (reduction of such activities as school work, television watching, and text messaging). Symptoms usually resolve within three weeks, though they may persist or complications may occur.

I’m still scheduled to give a paper at the Semantics Fest on Monday. I’m up for that, but I still need to work out a way to get there and back; I don’t think I’m up to the Stanford shuttlebus yet. Meanwhile, I have a handout to make up.

(And I wish my wound would finish healing up. I’d *really* like to get a haircut.)



2 Responses to “concussion”

  1. Walt Becker Says:

    banal comment — but do take the time you need to recover.

    • arnold zwicky Says:

      Thanks. Major effort today: I did a long afternoon at Stanford for the annual Semantics Fest. My paper was the third, and I listened to all the papers, though I made very few comments. I enjoy these events, and I’ve been a participant almost from the beginning. But it was unbelievably tiring. My wonderful colleague Elizabeth Traugott drove me there and back.

      I did get a haircut and beard/mustache trim on Saturday; my head wound isn’t fully healed, but the barber could work around it. These things did nothing for my physical problems, but they’re a big emotional boost.

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