The Effects Of Concussions On The Brain

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[ABSTRACT] Concussions are complex cerebral injuries that result in a series of metabolic events within the brain. The changes are seen in the fragile neuronal homeostatic balances where changes in the elevations of glutamate and potassium have been identified. The effects of concussions have also been seen in the functioning of the brain rather than in the structure of the brain itself. Being identified as mild traumatic brain injuries, occurring due to a bump or jolt to head or neck, concussions can result in both short-term and long-term effects. Although most individuals are able to recover from these head injuries, a small but relevant portion of individuals have been found to suffer from chronic long-term effects including early onsets of Alzheimer disease, clinical depression and other cognitive complications. The occurrence of a secondary concussion during the recovery phase of a primary concussion, also recognized as the second impact syndrome, has been shown to increase the risk for long-term effects of cerebral and neurological failure as the neurons have become incapable of experiencing normal functions after an initial traumatic brain injury. The recoveries from these initial concussions are critical to prevent the onset of long-term effects.

[CEREBRAL EFFECTS OF SPORTS-RELATED CONCUSSIONS] In a society where sports have become the focus for most youths, there has been increased attention to identification, diagnosis and prevention of sports-related
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