The difference between sports concussion and blast injury

Great video over at BrainLine

I learned a lot from this, namely:

  • Blast injury involves both compressing the body and expanding it — during and after the blast
  • Gas bubbles can end up in the bloodstream as a result
  • Hollow organs like ears and lungs are especially vulnerable
  • Blast injury shares elements with sports concussion, but it is much more complex

Great video – worth a watch. Check it out here:



Author: brokenbrilliant

I am a long-term multiple (mild) Traumatic Brain Injury (mTBI or TBI) survivor who experienced assaults, falls, car accidents, sports-related injuries in the 1960s, '70s, '80s, and '90s. My last mild TBI was in 2004, but it was definitely the worst of the lot. I never received medical treatment for my injuries, some of which were sports injuries (and you have to get back in the game!), but I have been living very successfully with cognitive/behavioral (social, emotional, functional) symptoms and complications since I was a young kid. I’ve done it so well, in fact, that virtually nobody knows that I sustained those injuries… and the folks who do know, haven’t fully realized just how it’s impacted my life. It has impacted my life, however. In serious and debilitating ways. I’m coming out from behind the shields I’ve put up, in hopes of successfully addressing my own (invisible) challenges and helping others to see that sustaining a TBI is not the end of the world, and they can, in fact, live happy, fulfilled, productive lives in spite of it all.

3 thoughts on “The difference between sports concussion and blast injury”

  1. A major link between the mechanism of injury in soldiers and football players, according to one Harvard researcher, is the similarity of the chin strap designs of the helmets. Forces are free to travel through these straps to the jaw and the skull base as the blast force tries to lift the helmet off the head. Furthermore, cartilage damage from such injurys can make one more prone to mtbi. Correcting and stabilizing the internal structure of the head, neck and jaw with an orthotic corrective device has shown great promise. Many NFL, NHL and NBA players have benefitted from this preseason, prior to play protocol. Soldiers at Ft. Carson showed a corrolation to those with concussion history and jaw damage, fitted with the retainer like appliance, they were compliant and had no mtbi in a full tour.


  2. Thanks Steve –

    I had heard about these mouthguards. It sounds promising for concussions from blows to the jaw, but I wonder about the other sources of injury. What concerns me is the thought that people might think this is a solution for TBI all across the board — but a brain shaken and torn from impact inside the bony skull is still susceptible to injury.

    Nonetheless, I do think this is one of many possible aids. We get into trouble, when we think that there’s one simple silver bullet to a complex problem. But we also get into trouble, when we needlessly complicate things.

    It’s all a balancing act, I suppose.

    Thanks for sharing the info.



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