Purpose of study:
Dizziness is a common symptom following concussion.Often confused as balance problems, symptoms of dizziness may be related to position. Concussion patients often describe a rapid heart rate, lightheadedness, or fainting when they stand. Headaches may be worse with standing. Our study prospectively evaluates predictors of dizziness and ‘orthostatic intolerance’ (symptoms provoked by standing) in an adolescent concussion population.
Who can participate:
Study participation requires:
1. Concussion within 1-12 weeks
2. Concussion symptoms at the time of participation
3. Age range between 12-19 years
4. Referral to the Headache and Pain Clinic at Nationwide Children’s Hospital
5. A normal EKG within the past 6 months
6. A negative pregnancy test (when appropriate)
Patients with known orthostatic intolerance, heart disease, or any medical condition that could impair communication or cause complications during tilt table testing will be excluded.
What will happen during the study:
Study participants will complete several questionnaires about their concussion symptoms, and they will have a tilt table test. The questionnaires cover various symptoms such as dizziness, headaches, memory problems, and changes in mood since the concussion. Parents will be asked about medical problems and any symptoms before the concussion. After completing the questionnaires, we will perform a tilt table test. During the test patients are asked to relax and lie down flat on a table for about 20 minutes. Wires from an electrocardiogram (or EKG) are attached to the chest, blood pressure monitors are attached to the fingers and arms, and straps are gently placed around the body. After 20 minutes, we raise the tilt table to 70 degrees. Patients feel as if they are standing upright. While in the tilted position we ask patients to tell us if they are having any symptoms such as dizziness. Some patients faint during the tilt table test. Our test is shorter than the non-research tilt table test. Most patients will remain in the tilted position for no more than 10 minutes.
Who to contact:
Geoffrey Heyer, MD