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Your healthcare provider will ask about the event leading to your head injury, your symptoms and perform a neurological exam. The neurological exam will check your:

  • Neurological function and reflexes.
  • Vision, eye movement, reaction to light.
  • Balance and coordination.
  • Hearing.
  • Strength.
  • Neck muscles for their motion and for tenderness

Verbal, written or computerized tests may be used to check your:

  • Thinking ability.
  • Problem-solving skills.
  • Memory and concentration.

You will also be asked if you’ve experienced mood changes, sleeping changes or any changes in behavior.

Imaging with CT scan or MRI isn’t always needed in the early evaluation of concussion. This is because most of the effects of a concussion aren’t seen on imaging. However, these imaging tests might be ordered if more serious effects of a concussion are suspected – like bleeding inside the skull, brain swelling or spinal cord or cervical spine injury – or if symptoms are worsening.

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