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A patient has been diagnosed with a concussion and is now being released from the hospital. Which of the following should the nurse include in the discharge instructions?

Explanation

• A concussion is caused by trauma to the head. It is a transient and reversible neuronal dysfunction marked by instantaneous loss of awareness and responsiveness. The loss of awareness can persist for moments to hours.

• Vomiting may be a symptom of increasing intracranial pressure and must be reported to the health-care provider. Unusual sleepiness, lethargy, decreased motor functions, ataxia, slurred speech, inability to concentrate, and/or foggy thinking should also be reported to the provider.

• Incorrect: The patient does not need to avoid OTC analgesics. Headaches can be treated with acetaminophen, but sedating drugs are generally withheld so that an accurate neurological assessment can be done.

• Incorrect: The patient does not need to maintain a clear liquid diet. There are no dietary restrictions for the patient with a concussion.

• Incorrect: Patients may or may not have a headache with a concussion. If a headache develops the patient should rest. Darkened rooms are preferred over well-lit rooms to treat a headache.

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