“Right now, for the overwhelming majority of people and the overwhelming
majority of time, a concussion is a clinical diagnosis,” said Dr.
Vernon Williams, a sports neurologist and director of the Kerlan-Jobe
Center for Sports Neurology and Pain Medicine at Kerlan-Jobe Orthopaedic
Clinic in Los Angeles.
“We make the diagnosis based on the signs and symptoms along with
the physical examination. We don’t have a widely available or frequently
used test where we can put somebody in a machine and say, yeah, you had
a concussion or not. It’s a combination of things.”
The Falcons’ training staff was on the ball that day.
“The key with that is that some of the symptoms are the same symptoms
that people could have for other conditions,” Williams said, “and
so that’s why you might have someone who has a headache and some
nausea, but it wasn’t a concussion or maybe it was from a migraine
or maybe it was from dehydration or heat illness or that kind of thing.”
Freeman missed a game in the 2015 season after he sustained a concussion
against the Indianapolis Colts on Nov. 22.
The Falcons were in no rush to get Freeman back during the exhibition season.
They wanted him ready for the regular-season opener.
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