Last month, Chicago White Sox first baseman Paul Konerko suffered a concussion after being struck in the right temple by Kansas City Royals outfielder Jarrod Dyson. After a gradual return to play, which included working out a little more than a week after the concussion, Konerko is now back on the team in full force.
What’s refreshing about Konerko, aside from the fact he took his concussion seriously enough to stay out of the game until he healed, is his honesty about the alarming effects of concussion.
In a video interview with Comcast Sportsnet, Konerko described feeling helpless, depressed, unmotivated and lethargic immediately after his brain injury.
“You just feel like a different human being. You just feel like out of the world. It’s just a weird feeling,” said Konerko, who took the ImPACT test after his injury to help diagnose the concussion. He described his emotional state not feeling like himself. “You almost feel, you don’t care about anything.” Konerko also said it hurt for several days just to shift his eyes.
In the video below (will open in a different page), Konerko provides an incredible glimpse into the physiological and psychological symptoms of brain injury.
The one part we take exception to is Konerko’s account [beginning at 1:16] of being blindsided by the actual impact which allowed for a “better chance of getting rattled and the brain moving.” The fact is we know that nothing, not even anticipating a blow, can prevent the brain from moving inside the skull.