Proliance Orthopedic Associates

Navigating the Road to Recovery: Orthopedic Approaches to Concussion Treatment

Concussions, often associated with sports injuries, accidents, or falls, are a type of traumatic brain injury that can have lasting effects on physical and cognitive well-being. While concussions are typically associated with neurology, orthopedic specialists play a vital role in the multidisciplinary approach to concussion treatment. In this blog post, we'll explore the role of orthopedics in the management and treatment of concussions, highlighting the integrated approach to ensure a comprehensive recovery.

Understanding Concussions:

Concussions result from a blow to the head or body, causing the brain to move within the skull. This movement can lead to various symptoms, including headache, dizziness, nausea, and cognitive impairments.

The Orthopedic Connection:

While concussions primarily affect the brain, orthopedic specialists are involved in the treatment process due to the close relationship between the musculoskeletal system and the symptoms experienced by those with concussions.

Neck and Spine Evaluation:

  • Muscle Tension and Alignment:
  • Orthopedic specialists assess the neck and spine for muscle tension and misalignments, as these can contribute to headache and dizziness symptoms.
  • Whiplash Injuries:
  • In cases where the concussion is associated with a traumatic incident, such as a car accident, orthopedic evaluation helps identify and address potential whiplash injuries.

Collaborative Care:

  • ยทTeam Approach:
  • Orthopedic specialists work in collaboration with neurologists, physical therapists, and other healthcare professionals to create a comprehensive treatment plan.
  • Imaging Studies:
  • Orthopedic assessments may include imaging studies, such as MRIs or CT scans, to rule out structural issues and guide the treatment approach.

Physical Therapy for Concussion:

  • Vestibular Rehabilitation:
  • Orthopedic-focused physical therapy can include exercises to address vestibular system issues, improving balance and reducing dizziness.
  • Neck Strengthening:
  • Strengthening exercises for the neck muscles can aid in better head support, potentially reducing the severity and frequency of headaches.

Orthopedic Interventions:

  • Joint Mobilization:
  • Orthopedic specialists may use joint mobilization techniques to address stiffness and improve range of motion in the neck and spine.

  • Soft Tissue Manipulation:
  • Massage and soft tissue manipulation can help alleviate muscle tension and promote overall relaxation.

Activity Modification:

  • Gradual Return to Activity:
  • Orthopedic specialists work with patients to develop a gradual return-to-activity plan, ensuring a safe and monitored progression to prevent re-injury.

  • Education on Red Flags:
  • Patients receive education on recognizing and reporting symptoms that may indicate a worsening condition, enabling prompt intervention.

At Proliance Orthopedic Associates, our Sports Medicine physicians play a crucial role in the holistic approach to concussion treatment, addressing musculoskeletal aspects that contribute to symptoms and hinder recovery. As our understanding of concussions continues to evolve, the integration of orthopedic expertise remains a cornerstone in the journey toward optimal recovery and well-being. If you are need of a concussion evaluation, call us today at 425-656-5060.