Published on November 04, 2014

Stamford Hospital Launches Comprehensive Concussion Center

Stamford Hospital’s Orthopedic & Spine Institute and Sports Medicine Program announced the launch of a comprehensive Concussion Center. Located at the Hospital’s Chelsea Piers location, the new Concussion Center will focus on providing community education on the cause, diagnosis and treatment of concussion as well as conduct baseline testing and provide individualized care for young athletes and adults suffering from effects of concussion.

The Concussion Center will offer access to the latest diagnostic tools and expert clinicians across several disciplines, drawing on the Hospital’s expertise in orthopedic sports medicine, integrative medicine, neurosurgery, neuropsychology as well as pediatric and adult neurology. Led by Christina B. Kunec, PsyD, a neuropsychologist who recently joined Stamford Hospital from the nationally recognized concussion program at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center in Pennsylvania, specialists will diagnose, treat and manage all aspects of recovery from a concussion, help patients and families cope with lingering effects and, if necessary, offer direction on the athlete’s return to sport and school.

“Concussions have received plenty of attention in the media over the last few years, but it is a complex condition that can impact each person differently,” said Dr. Kunec. “The majority of patients recover from a concussion within seven to 10 days – but it can take longer for children and adolescents so it is important to evaluate and manage their recovery and appropriate return to school and play to avoid longer-term complications.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, each year U.S. emergency departments treat an estimated 173,285 sports- and recreation-related traumatic brain injuries (TBI), including concussions, among children and adolescents. A concussion is a mild traumatic brain injury caused by a bump, blow or sudden change in body direction that results in the brain moving quickly within the skull and can cause swelling due to making impact with the inside of the skull or simply overstretching brain tissue. Symptoms can include balance problems, amnesia, memory loss, difficulty concentrating, headache, light sensitivity, blurred vision, slurred speech and dizziness.

“Helmets and other protective gear may protect against impact injuries such as fractures and lacerations, but they cannot prevent a concussion – so it is important for coaches parents and athletes to understand how concussions happen and how to identify them quickly when they do,” said Certified Athletic Trainer Rebecca Petersen, Director, Motion Analysis Program at Stamford Hospital’s Orthopedic & Spine Institute. “A person does not need to be unconscious to have a concussion – and symptoms can sometimes not appear for several days after the original trauma.”

You can learn more about Stamford Hospital’s Concussion Center by calling 203.276.4123 or visit the Concussion Center's web page.

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