Dr. Elyse Watkins DHSc, PA-C, DFAAPA
Purpose: The purpose of this article is to provide employers an opportunity to understand the consequences of work-related concussions.
Method: A PubMed literature search was conducted with search terms concussion, workplace injuries, and head trauma work-related injuries. Articles were retrieved and reviewed to compile data supporting the research, and an additional search of OSHA and the CDC for other supporting data.
Results: Research has focused on the sequela of a concussion, and it's consequences for the injured. It would be beneficial to illuminate the implications of the injury on the cost to the employers as well as the physical and psychological ramifications for the employee.
Conclusion: A concussion is a traumatic brain injury sustained by blunt force trauma to the head and or sudden rapid, forceful movement of the head, causing the brain to bounce around or twist in the skull. The CDC definition for concussion; "A concussion is also known as mild traumatic brain injury and is estimated to be 85% of traumatic brain injuries equaling up to 3.8 million injuries annually."1 There is currently no universal criteria for the diagnosis of a concussion, but there are common symptoms. Signs and symptoms are frequently subjective and not objective; the most common symptom is a headache. Most symptoms from a mild concussion resolve in seven to ten days but ten to fifteen percent of concussion victims suffer long-lasting complaints. In Occupational medicine, we see concussions from workplace injuries. According to the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), a concussion can cost approximately $60,770 in direct costs and $66,847 in indirect costs per incidence.2 With that said, it would be of great benefit for employers to be aware of the cost of a work-related concussion and how to prevent concussions in the workplace.
Keywords: Concussion, Head Trauma, Workplace Injuries, Work-Related Injuries, Occupational Medicine, Safety.
Jackson D. Concussions in The Workplace. University of Lynchburg DMSc Doctoral Project Assignment Repository. 2020; 2(1).
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