Traumatic Brain Injury and Post Concussion Syndrome For traumatic brain injury (TBI) and post concussion syndrome (PCS).

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Old 06-28-2020, 04:46 AM #1
Digamma Digamma is offline
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Default Sudden and long-term high blood pressure after concussion?

Hello everyone. My first head injury occurred around 2017, when I fell and hit my had on the ice. Right after, I felt pretty dizzy and nauseous. I'm pretty sure it was a concussion, as I developed symptoms like light sensitivity. I had some issues, but I'd say that I mostly recovered from that injury. However, my troubles really started, or at least got much worse, with the second one.

I fell on ice again, but this time on my buttocks, during a day a little more than a year ago, and that night started to experience concussion-like symptoms. It's hard to describe, but I couldn't concentrate on my work, my head felt like it was in some kind of fog, and had trouble falling asleep that night. The following days, I was dizzy had headaches, was nauseous, and could barely concentrate on anything. So I stayed home for some time and did some physical therapy to work on the vestibular issues I was having (which did help for some time at least). The acute symptoms were getting better, but like many on this forum, I was having problem with sudden movements of the head and neck especially; in the beginning, when I walked, every time I took a step, I would feel some kind of pain/stress in my head/neck area like it was super sensitive. Any quick movement of my head and neck, and I would get the same symptoms that I experienced on the first night of my injury. My anxiety and general mental health got worse after the injury (probably because of a mix of the injury itself and of the symptoms it caused), so that may play a role in these issues that I still have today, although they have definitely gotten better. I also got very sensitive to noise (even today), such as a relatively large object falling to the floor and making a loud sound.

I did think it was weird that I got a concussion from falling and not even hitting my head, but it seems to be the closest thing to describing my injury (and from what I understand you are more vulnerable to concussions after already having one). One doctor I met with did think that I didn't hurt my head, but I actually injured my neck. I've recently been working with a chiropractor on some of my issues in that area.

I also noticed that every time I went to a doctor's office after my injury, my blood pressure was high, while before I was in the normal range. I've also checked it at home and it has been high, so it's not just because I'm nervous when at the doctor's, e.g. This has persisted, more than a year after the incident. I know that blood pressure can increase shortly after a head injury, but I wasn't able to find anything in the literature on long-term increases in blood pressure. I was thus wondering if anybody here had a long-term increase in their blood pressure after a concussion. If so, I'd be interested in knowing if they figured out the cause of this phenomenon, and if yes, and what the cause was.

I am currently thinking about potential hormonal causes, maybe related to hypopituitarism that can develop after head injuries. Perhaps some sort of autonomic nervous system dysfunction? Maybe these ideas are too far-fetched, but the lack of a concrete cause for the hypertension naturally makes me think about various hypotheses.

I should also mention that a few months after the fall, I started developing numbness and tingling in the arms and legs, as well as some pains. I probably had some nerve issues also that might have developed after the accident, potentially because of some pressure from misplaced bones and/or muscles around my neck area. I am currently working on that with my chiropractor.

I left out some details that I felt weren't too important so as to not make my post too long, so definitely feel free to ask me questions about anything. I also had an MRI of my head and neck done, and they were both fine.
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Old 06-28-2020, 12:35 PM #2
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Wekcome.

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Old 06-28-2020, 01:50 PM #3
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[I also had an MRI of my head and neck done, and they were both fine. ]

When was Mri done? recently or yrs ago?
things can be missed, if they were focused on one thing and maybe something else is the problem.
Did you request a copy of the MRI report?
It is nice to have that even tho dr says all is fine..
At a certain age most of us have some minor things showing on MRI...

Did chiro have Xrays done before working on you?
does chiro do soft tissue work or only adjustments?
strained muscles that are not treated will pull and affect any adjustments..
my DC used ultrasound, If stim, and low level laser along with adjusting..

Your symptoms sound like more than concussion related only.
Could be something else also..
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Old 06-30-2020, 12:08 AM #4
Mark in Idaho Mark in Idaho is offline
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Digamma,

I experienced a similar vertical impact injury. It sounds like an upper neck injury.

As Jo*mar asked about soft tissue work by your chiro, I agree.

A few issues to consider.

Do you have images of your lower neck? Some of us have cervical or false ribs associated with the lower cervical vertebra. These can get inflamed and cause the numbness you mention when there is a vertical spine compression injury. The high T vertebra can be traumatized and cause TOS, Thoracic Outlet Syndrome cluster of symptoms.

If your chiro is doing the classic 'twist the head and pop the neck' adjustments, he may be too aggressive for your neck. C-1 and C-2 do not respond to this technique because they are not faceted like the lower vertebra. They require very gentle care. Activator, NUCCA, Atlas Orthogonal Chiro, and similar can be helpful.

My physical therapist had me lie on my back and used gentle traction and mobilization to help C-1 and C-2 settle into good alignment.

Regular icing of your neck in all areas may be helpful.

It is important to understand that these neck injuries are what I call Subtle Neck Injuries. They rarely show on imaging. They do not present painful symptoms one would related to an injured neck.

BUT, taking care of the neck as if it is injured with gentle treatment, good posture discipline, icing and such can slowly show improvements.

Range of motion exercises and tracking are usually premature. The upper neck must stabilize before returning to range of motion.

There are two clinic in Canada that specialize in neck issues related to concussion. Myoworx is physiotherapist oriented and the other is chiro oriented. They have demonstrated the value of careful cervical care in these situation.

The US providers are starting to recognize gentle cervical care as important.

I hope your chiro has gentle techniques.

btw, These upper cervical traumas can cause inflammation in the brain stem that can mess with the autonomic nervous system. That is why icing to reduce inflammation can help.
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Old 07-01-2020, 12:09 PM #5
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If you have high blood pressure and are experiencing balance problems and tingling you may have had a TIA mini stroke or a larger stroke somehow. High blood pressure is a risk for stroke and can continue post-stroke I think. The balance issues and tingling can also indicate other neurologic issues with the neck, spine or brain unrelated to Stroke. It's possible the concussion has led to inflammation in your brain. I'm so sorry you are dizzy.
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