Massachusetts Medical Society's Physician Focus

May 2017

Concussions and Brain Injuries

What’s going on in a concussion? How could it affect us? What should we do about it? In recent years, physicians and scientists have learned a lot about concussions. Because of this new information, our approaches to treatment have changed. In this episode, a physician, a brain injury survivor, and a patient advocate outline what you need to know to take care of yourself or someone else after a knock on the head.

In this episode:

  • Theodore Macnow, M.D., pediatric emergency physician, talks with Bruce Karlin, M.D., and answers these frequently asked questions: What exactly is a concussion? How do I know if I have a concussion? Should I take time off school, work, or sports? If I have symptoms, why is it risky to push through them? Why is my doctor telling me it’s best to sleep? Is it OK to play video games? (Read Dr. Macnow’s brief guide to concussion.)
  • Ryan Farrell, who suffered a traumatic brain injury during a college cheerleading routine, tells her story, and shows us why it’s vital to immediately check out a bang on the head;
  • Justine Cote, Manager of Prevention at the Brain Injury Association of Massachusetts, provides key information, and offers resources and support to individuals and families dealing with concussion and traumatic brain injury.
  • Text:
    MMS/Lucy Berrington


Theodore Macnow, M.D.

Justine Cote, Manager of Prevention at the
Brain Injury Association of Massachusetts

Ryan Farrell