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Prognosis

Most people with minor head injuries recover without any problems. Keep in mind, however, that some symptoms (headaches, dizziness, difficulty concentrating) may improve slowly over 6 to 12 weeks. Recovery will probably be slower in people whose injuries resulted in long periods of unconsciousness or amnesia. Recovery is also slower in the elderly, in those with previous head trauma, and in people with psychiatric or substance abuse problems.

A small percentage of people who suffer minor head injury may develop permanent disabilities or a condition called persistent post-concussive syndrome. This may include headaches, dizziness and difficulty concentrating. Consult your doctor if you still experience any symptoms three months after your head injury. Although there is no known cure for this condition, treatment is available for many of the symptoms.

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From Health A-Z, Harvard Health Publications. Copyright 2007 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College. All rights reserved. Written permission is required to reproduce, in any manner, in whole or in part, the material contained herein. To make a reprint request, contact Harvard Health Publications. Used with permission of StayWell.

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