Neurosurgery - Patient Care and Treatment

Learn about mild and severe traumatic brain injury, and TBI rehab from the Pediatric Neurosurgery team at Penn State Children’s Hospital. 

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Traumatic Brain Injury

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) occurs when a blow or other type of head injury causes brain damage. The mildest form of TBI is a concussion. Any form of TBI can lead to permanent brain damage, or even death, if left untreated.

The doctors and staff at Penn State Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation have special training in caring for patients with TBIs. The rehab physicians evaluate, treat and manage TBI complications including:

  • Abnormal gait (walking)
  • Cognitive impairment (trouble thinking)
  • Headaches and other pain
  • Spasticity (muscle problems)
  • Weakness

Rehab for traumatic brain injury

Our physicians, nurses, and therapists provide comprehensive rehab for patients with mild to severe TBI. Depending on the severity, physicians may recommend one of the following treatments:

For mild TBI:

  • Outpatient concussion clinic for pain management and therapies for memory and concentration problems
  • Treatment of post-concussive disorder, including headaches, mood disorders, impaired balance and abnormal gait

For severe TBI:

  • Inpatient (acute) rehab for post-operative patients, including physical therapy and medical management
  • Transition of patients to a day or outpatient program for ongoing rehab

What to expect from TBI rehab

Doctors coordinate patients' rehab and medical care with other specialists, which may include:

  • Neuropsychologist
  • Physical, speech or occupational therapists

As patients go through rehab, our physicians and staff work with their primary care providers to ensure a safe transition home. We will:

  • Work together on patients' medical care, especially if there are other medical conditions
  • Help patients find local resources for home therapy services to aid recovery
  • Recommend home medical equipment and orthotics
  • Provide patient and family education to support patients' return to a healthy life

Contact Us

Scheduling: 717-531-3828

Academic Office: 717-531-8807
Fax: 717-531-0085