What is a concussion?

Concussion is often poorly understood and managed. The outcome of repeated or poorly managed concussions/traumatic head injury can be serious and long term. This is particularly true for children and adolescents who may return to sport too early following a concussion, and who may suffer long term physical and learning consequences as a result.

Concussion results in a variety of non- specific symptoms and often does not involve a loss of consciousness.


  • Approx 35,000 cases of concussion each year in NZ (Feigin V et al 2013).
  • 21% (7,350 injuries per year) of all head injuries in New Zealand are sustained through sport related activity. ACC only receive claims for 6,250 of those sports related concussion injuries, suggesting that over 1000 currently go untreated (Theadom A et al, 2014).

Symptoms include:

  • Physical problems – pain, headaches, sensitivity, speech, swallow sensory, dizziness, unsteadiness
  • Cognitive problems – confusion, attention, memory, problem solving and processing, language, impaired insight
  • Fatigue
  • Emotional and behavioural problems including anxiety, demotivation, agitation impulsivity
  • Difficulty with social interaction and family relationships


Recovery requires physical and “cognitive” (activities requiring brain concentration and attention) rest. This may mean some days off school or work and refraining from activities such as sport as well as screen-based activities for the first few days. 

In most people (80-90%), symptoms resolve within 1-14 days. Some might have ongoing symptoms for up to 3 months, and in about 10% of people these symptoms persist for more than 6 months. This is known as Post-Concussion Syndrome (PCS).

Concussions that do not resolve within the expected time frames may require specialised medical testing and retesting to determine recovery and return to activity timeframes. It is important to realise that previous concussion may prolong your recovery and make you more vulnerable to re-injury if you sustain further head trauma.


The team at Rope Neuro Rehabilitation all have experience with assessment and treatment of the symptoms associated with concussion. We are able to assess and provide individualised intervention based on your physical and cognitive presentation in the setting that suits you best.

We can see you privately however are all registered to provide treatment for those with concussion under the concussion contract and training for independence contracts.

If you are not sure in regards to the funding options for your brain injury if it was a result of an accident feel free to give us a call and we would be happy to advise you.



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