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ABC6: Brain Health & Concussions

What Is Happening to the Brain During a Concussion

We are hearing more about the impact concussions are having around the country, particularly in sports.  The big questions still out there surround what is really happening inside the brain, and what can be done to slow them down. Of course, the biggest questions is how many concussions will cause permanent disabilities.

It's something neurologists around the county are watching closely. Not only in the patients they are seeing daily, but in the research happening around the globe.

"The old days it was kinda like shake it off, your bell's rung, get back in there. Now the players get educated, the coaches get educated, trainers, even the referees, so that if somebody is in field play and it appears they have suffered a concussion they are taken out immediately and they don't return to play," OhioHealth Neurologist Geoff Eubank told ABC6.

Dr. Eubank says technology has come a long way in equipment, but most of all taking it seriously after signs of problems has really taken hold.

"You need people to do normal non-exertion activities, lay low, don't have a lot of stimuli but after a couple, two to three days especially if symptoms subside, you need to kinda like get back to some normal but not aggressive activities," he told ABC6.

Signs of a concussion could include mood swings or memory loss. Other times it could show up in smaller doses like lingering headaches. As for what is really happening inside the brain, Dr. Eubank says it can happen from the first hit to the last.

"At the microscopic level, every time that brain is jostled, some of those nerve cells get twisted and they form proteins that exist within the cell that probably end up being toxic to that cell,” said Dr. Eubank.

To see stories on CTE from ABC6, this past fall, click here or here.

To learn more about neuroscience at OhioHealth, click here.