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Youth Concussion - The Vestibular Connection

Posted by Cynthia Ryan

Educational campaign bridges gap between head injuries and balance /inner ear problems.

The Vestibular Disorders Association (VEDA) is educating youth patients and their parents, coaches, teachers and healthcare professionals about the disabling, and often lingering, effects of concussion injuries. When left undetected, concussions can result in damage to the inner ear and brain and lead to chronic vestibular disorders, which impact balance, learning, social interactions and the ability to perform everyday tasks.

Highlighting the campaign is a video featuring Lauren, a teenage vestibular concussion patient who is battling back from multiple concussions to start college. Also featured are retired NHL captain and veteran player, Bryce Salvador who suffered lingering vestibular issues from an injury, Dr. Michael Hoffer, NFL grant recipient researching advanced vestibular diagnostic tools at the University of Miami Health System, and Jim Buskirk, PT, SCS, who explains vestibular rehabilitation.

“The effects of dizziness and imbalance from injury can go misdiagnosed or even disregarded and can last much longer than more well known concussion symptoms, which was my case,” says Salvador now a VEDA advocate and chair for VEDA’s Balance Awareness Week, September 12-18th.  “It was a year total before I was able to play again. But there is hope. I played arguably some of the best hockey of my career after going through vestibular rehabilitation.” 

In addition to the video, other resources available include an infographic, professional white paper, power point teaching presentation, and awareness flyer. A live webinar on the topic with Dr. Hoffer and Jim Buskirk will be held during Balance Awareness Week.

“As kids go back to school and sports we want to educate them and their support network to create awareness about vestibular problems that can result from head injuries. These materials prepare kids to play safely so they can continue to enjoy the sports they love,” says Cynthia Ryan, VEDA Executive Director.

VEDA is the leading international organization that people turn to for help with vestibular (inner ear and brain) disorders. VEDA is an authoritative source of information that is clear, reliable, and scientifically objective. VEDA supports people with vestibular disorders by connecting them to health care specialists and support networks and promotes awareness for vestibular disorders through testimony and advocacy. 

Click here for more information on vestibular concussion.

Video Sponsored by Fitterfirst and The Vestibular Project

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