Concussion with loss of consciousness may be related to life with some disability

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People who have had a concussion in which they have lost consciousness may be more likely to have a disability or limitations later in life (such as difficulty walking or limitations in the amount or type of work they can do) that people who have never had a concussion, according to a study published on May 26, 2021, online issue of Neurology.

“Approximately 16% of all adults have experienced loss of consciousness and our study found that nearly half of these people live with disabilities,” said study author Andrea LC Schneider , MD, Ph.D., of the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine in Philadelphia and a member of the American Academy of Neurology. “This substantial burden of disability suggests that research on how to care for and improve the functioning of people with long-term concussions should be a priority for both. and for planning for individuals “.

The study involved 7,390 people with a mean age of 58 years. People were asked if they had ever had a concussion with loss of consciousness. They were also asked questions about their ability to do such as eating and dressing, preparing meals and doing household chores, climbing steps and carrying heavy objects. Theirs it was also tested to see if there was any disability in the arms. Disability was defined as “some difficulty” or greater difficulty in an area.

He was also asked if a physical, mental or emotional problem prevents them from working in a job or limits the type or amount of work they can do. A self-response was defined as having a disability in this area.

A total of 16% of people had experienced a concussion with loss of consciousness. Of these, 47% had some disability in at least one area of ​​functioning, compared with 37% of people with no history of concussion.

“This corresponds to 11.4 million people in the United States with a history of concussion with loss of and disability in at least one area, “Schneider said.” And it is possible that this is an underestimation, as the study did not include military people, nursing centers or prisons that could be more likely to have concussions and disability. “

The study found that the area with the greatest disability was in mobility, such as being able to climb 10 steps or stand up from an armless chair, with 38% experiencing at least some difficulty. About 36% said they had at least some difficulty in general physical activities, such as carrying heavy objects or stopping for long periods. About 35% of people said they had a limited amount or type of work.

The results were virtually the same after the researchers adjusted for other factors that could affect disability, such as age, amount of physical activity, high blood pressure, amount of sleep, and depression. The only area that showed no link between concussion and disability was grip strength.

Schneider noted that the study was not designed to show cause and effect. It only shows an association between past with and disability.


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Citation: Concussion with loss of consciousness may be related to life with a disability (2021, May 26), recovered on May 27, 2021 at https://medicalxpress.com/news/2021-05-concussion-loss -consciousness-linked-life.html

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