John Michael, 15 Years Old, Bradenton, FL

John Michael, 15 Years Old, Bradenton, FL

In 2011, John Michael sustained a concussion during a winter basketball game in Ligonier, Pa. He began showing symptoms about a day after his initial injury. His parents turned to a family friend and local orthopaedic surgeon who recommended the UPMC Sports Medicine Concussion Program. After a few months of hard work, John Michael was feeling back to normal.

In January of 2015, John Michael, now a freshman in high school and living in Florida, was hit in the head during a basketball game.john michael

Concussion Symptoms

This time, John Michael immediately began feeling:

  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Light sensitivity

Based on the success of his previous treatment, he and his parents knew they wanted to return to Pittsburgh to see the concussion team at UPMC.

“My husband and I were convinced the team in Pittsburgh was the best group to manage John Michael’s care and help us reach the best, quickest, and optimal outcome,” John Michael’s mother, Terri, recalls.

Concussion Diagnosis

After traveling to Pittsburgh within 24 hours of John Michael’s injury, Micky Collins, PhD, assessed this second concussion. The team created a rehab plan including vestibular and exertion therapy to help John Michael return to the court and the classroom as quickly as possible.

Managing the Concussion

John Michael and his parents continued to travel to Pittsburgh for therapy and checkups. Although disappointed to miss some games along the way, John Michael continued to work on his therapy and soon felt like himself again.

Terri summarizes, “Dr. Collins and his team are very insightful and have great empathy for athletes. Their program helps to manage even the most subtle symptoms and provide a precise therapeutic plan.”

Concussion Recovery

In February of 2015, John Michael was cleared to return to the basketball court.

“Even though we had to travel from sunny Florida to subzero temperatures three times in a month, I would not think of going anywhere else for treatment,” he says.


To learn more about our patients, read their stories.