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Yr 12 and significant injury/illness

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Lees75
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#1

Good morning, all,

Has anyone had any experience with navigating Yr 12 while managing an illness/injury? DS17 sustained a fairly significant concussion 10 days ago and I think it is not going to go away quickly. He is still on Panadol and Nurofen every 4/6 hours for a headache that hasn't stopped and he is not doing not much. GP gave him permission to go out a little bit on Saturday, and it means he slept most of Sunday, even when coming home from his best friend's 18th birthday at 9.45pm.

Today is the first day of Term 2 and the school has been wonderful - will essentially do whatever to support him. Yr 12 coordinator was emailing me in the school holidays, etc. Today he is going because he doesn't have any frees, having all 4 subject classes. So he can touch base with all 4 teachers, and then the plan is to stay home for the rest of the week and just do what he can manage symptomatically. The teachers will for sure let him rest his head on the desk as needed and go to the office to lie down.

The biggest issue is that he can't look at his lap-top, hardly at all. Yesterday he tried to make a few slight changes to his big PE assignment and lasted about 1 minute, with sunglasses on.
The teachers will all support him, and the deputy principal was contacting SACE today to advise them and see what immediate concessions/accommodations can be made. He is supposed to be doing the True Grit obstacle course on May 10, as part of his Integrated Sports subject - can't see that happening. The teacher has assured us it will be ok somehow.
P.E. is tricky, as it is obviously very practical, or doing their assignments on the lap-top, which he can't do either of currently.
Maths - he can potentially do some, as his concentration allows, when the school can arrange a text book, rather than the online text book.
English - he is potentially going to dictate essays and ideas, and then, when he is better and can look at his lap-top, finalise everything, as his English teacher said none of the official deadlines are anywhere close - just the school deadlines. She is going to set him his own timetable.

I don't think I really have any questions - just looking for some sympathy! And some empathy from parents who have been through the Yr 12 illness/injury scenario.
Last edited by Lees75 on Tue Apr 27, 2021 10:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Lisa
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#2

Poor kid! That actually sounds like it could be a brain injury, with the visual disturbances. Are you happy with the medical treatment he's received? Are they sure it's just a concussion?
I imagine he can get special consideration at the end of it, but I'd be wanting more medical attention.
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Lees75
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#3

Lurker wrote: Tue Apr 27, 2021 12:23 pm Poor kid! That actually sounds like it could be a brain injury, with the visual disturbances. Are you happy with the medical treatment he's received? Are they sure it's just a concussion?
I imagine he can get special consideration at the end of it, but I'd be wanting more medical attention.
We are going to the GP every few days. They have done a CT scan to rule out any brain bleeds, etc. From all the reading I have done, sensitivity to light and bright screens is fairly standard post-concussion symptoms?
Lisa
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Gabbitz
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#4

I’m sorry to hear that. It sounds very difficult.
I can’t answer from injury perspective, but my niece was hospitalised in Term 3 of her year 12 2 years ago. For anxiety and depression issues. Of course grade 12 stress certainly wasn’t helping her much!
The school and the board helped heaps as she’d been a straight A student up until then.
So they had her do some tests at school, with a friend asking the questions or another teacher asking, with someone scribing for her. Some assessment results were taken from previous semesters as they dropped some assessments completely.
She was given longer time periods to complete exams and linger between exams or allowed her to choose when she was ready to take each exam.
But from memory, my sister in law was in contact with the school and her doctors advocating on her behalf to find the best solution for each subject.

All the best. Hope the head injury settles soon. That sounds quite scary.
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Chicken Pie
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#5

no input just well wishes to your son
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#6

Lees75 wrote: Tue Apr 27, 2021 12:28 pm
Lurker wrote: Tue Apr 27, 2021 12:23 pm Poor kid! That actually sounds like it could be a brain injury, with the visual disturbances. Are you happy with the medical treatment he's received? Are they sure it's just a concussion?
I imagine he can get special consideration at the end of it, but I'd be wanting more medical attention.
We are going to the GP every few days. They have done a CT scan to rule out any brain bleeds, etc. From all the reading I have done, sensitivity to light and bright screens is fairly standard post-concussion symptoms?
Ok good; if you're seeing a doctor regularly then I'm sure they're on top of it.
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Julie3Girls
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#7

My dd had an ankle injury in y12, one of her subjects was hsc dance. I know she applied for special consideration for one of her practical assessments, and received an estimated mark.

Basically, if there are any scheduled assessments, you can apply for misadventure/special consideration. Any other purely school based work can usually. E just worked out with the teachers.

It’s crappy - dealing not only with an injury but also the stress of missing school work, and then having to catch up later.

Hope he feels better really soon.
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DaLittleEd
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#8

Lees75 wrote: Tue Apr 27, 2021 12:28 pm
Lurker wrote: Tue Apr 27, 2021 12:23 pm Poor kid! That actually sounds like it could be a brain injury, with the visual disturbances. Are you happy with the medical treatment he's received? Are they sure it's just a concussion?
I imagine he can get special consideration at the end of it, but I'd be wanting more medical attention.
We are going to the GP every few days. They have done a CT scan to rule out any brain bleeds, etc. From all the reading I have done, sensitivity to light and bright screens is fairly standard post-concussion symptoms?
I had a pretty bad concussion towards the end of last year. The light sensitivity and trouble with screens is a common symptom. I didn't have a scan on the brain, GP was pretty sure it was standard concussion (mind you that does involve some brain bleeding). However they did scan my neck as there were concerns with that.

Tbh, it took me about 3 months to recover, especially with looking at my computer. However I have heard that women have far worse reactions to concussions, also I am much older than your son and couldn't rest entirety due to family responsibilities. I strongly urge you to get your son to rest completely for a couple more weeks. And speak to your school about the possibility that he may need up to a month off. I did try and finish an assignment for uni after my concussion, and ended up having to dictate it to my husband as I couldn't look at the screen.

If he doesn't rest now it will be a long recovery.

Also, I would suggest (depending on the injury) that you take him to a physio as soon as the GP says he can go. I am still getting wicked headaches whenever I carry things or ride my bike etc etc and it is all from my neck.
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#9

Habe you looked into any early acceptance things from unis (if that's his plan)? The person I know who missed almost a term of year 12 got special consideration and their marks were increased as a result (I.e. in one subject they had an exam mark of 30 and school assessment mark of 60 but year 11 had had 80, they were awarded a mark in the 70s I believe. The other subjects were less extreme examples).
They were also accepted early to uni on the proviso they pass at least 3 subjects.
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#10

A friend had the same scenario last year in NSW. Document, document, document everything. Put in for special consideration now. There are some rules around the length of time you have to be incapacitated for. The kid I knew was a bit stuck as his injury was just before the hsc and his year 11 marks weren’t great ( from Emory your DS has good marks). Definitely look at the early entries as well. Poor kid - so disheartening.
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#11

My friend's daughter suffered from severe (hospitalised) glandular fever in year 12 last year. She also has very severe anxiety. We are in Qld. They applied for an exemption for exams for her based on her illnesses and were not told until the day if she was going to be granted the exemption (or whatever it is called).

Didn't matter in the end anyway, as she applied for Uni based on previous year 11 results and was granted early acceptance, so year 12 final stuff didn't matter anyway.
There are plenty of pathways these days.

I would have him rest up and recover. Best wishes.
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#12

My kid had concussion last year abs was unconscious for several minutes. Took him about 6 weeks to recover. I don’t have year 12 children yet, but was wondering if he was right to go back to school? My kid had trouble thinking for a few weeks and pain got worse several days after the event, when he was trying to think. At least ours happened at the end of COVID and gave me the perfect excuse to blow off the last few weeks of home schooling!

Just wondering if it s worth having a proper rest period and reassuring him the school will sort something out.
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#13

Honestly, with an injury like that, I wouldn't even be thinking of School, I'd be worried about his health in the interim & in the future.
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Lees75
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#14

Mooguru wrote: Tue Apr 27, 2021 1:46 pm Habe you looked into any early acceptance things from unis (if that's his plan)? The person I know who missed almost a term of year 12 got special consideration and their marks were increased as a result (I.e. in one subject they had an exam mark of 30 and school assessment mark of 60 but year 11 had had 80, they were awarded a mark in the 70s I believe. The other subjects were less extreme examples).
They were also accepted early to uni on the proviso they pass at least 3 subjects.
I hadn’t thought about that, and if this drags on for too long, is potentially something we will have to investigate. He had straight As and A+ last year, including one yr 12 subject, so this could work in his favour. The only thing is, he has no idea what he wants to do-lol! And he is a bit of a perfectionist, so even with early entry, I don’t think he would be capable of relaxing and letting his grades slip.

Teachers were great today- all told him not to worry about their subject but to focus on the other subjects first-lol! They had a relief in PE, which was assignment time, so he had a nap. In English, his teacher spent 20 mins planning with him and then, because he couldn’t do any work on his laptop, he was distracting his friends, so she told him to shut up and take a nap. (He has a great relationship with her).
Last edited by Lees75 on Tue Apr 27, 2021 11:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Lisa
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#15

I can’t help with year 12, but I can help with the concussion.

My daughter had a significant concussion last year, which didn’t really get any better. She ended up being part of a Murdoch Children’s Research Institute study looking at kids with concussion. She had a full rehab program (which she hated because the exercises she had to do hurt) which worked wonders. It was about an 8 week program run by a neuro physio.

We are in Melbourne, but I could send you the details of the person who ran it to see if you could either pay for it privately by zoom, or if she knows anyone in Adelaide that ran it.

I highly recommend getting on top of it quickly, as it’s a matter of retraining the brain, and it can be done.
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#16

Can he potentially do year 12 over 2 years if his symptoms persist? Ds1 had trouble from his concussion for 6-8 weeks with the major symptoms but still has trouble now with concentration and it was 3yrs ago.
Rest as much as possible and no rushing back to footy and exercise. That’s what ds had the most trouble accepting and should have stayed off for another week but dr cleared him and I only allowed it if he wore headgear and if you know AFL not many wear it and should!
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#17

A friend of mine in the sword fighting community had a very bad concussion when he was young and stupid. Couldn’t read for nine weeks and failed his exams

Rest is important!
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#18

Poor boy. I had concussion from a motorbike accident when in my 20s, and was told to just rest, and not watch TV (only screens at the time, fortunately) or read, and that went on for six weeks which was pretty boring, but at least I wasn’t doing year 12.

No doubt you have plenty of Physio contacts - I agree with the pp too about the effect on your body of being in constant discomfort.
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#19

Not sure about in SA, but in Vic we would put in an application for special consideration (for any immediate SACS and in case it persists), and complete a SEAS application when applying to university later in the year. Not sure if SA has SEAS or if its called something else, but it essentially tries to support students who have had unexpected issues throughout year 12 and give them the marks that they should have received. Sort of. Sounds like school is supportive, so I assume they will be all over this. I try to reassure students that this situation is new and scary for them but it isn't for me- its my job. So they focus on recovery and ill ensure that the processes happen and they get to where they need or want to be.
As above- document everything. Date concussion was received, ongoing issues and importantly, how this is impacting schooling as he will be asked to write an impact statement. This could be done now (by you even) and amended later as sometimes we remember things with rose coloured glasses once we are recovered.
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#20

If he’s interested in uni, covid is working in his favour - lots of Unis are basing acceptances on yr 11 results. I know Uni Adelaide is and I think flinders too. Good luck!
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#21

Your son is not in the high risk group for this, but my niece was diagnosed with Post Concussion Syndrome and it took her a long time to recover.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Post-concussion_syndrome

No real advice, but I hope he gets better quickly and can resume normal activity. It's difficult to rest, but better if he rests more initially, rather than less for a longer period.
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Lees75
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#22

Thanks for all your support :)
I have emailed the program director that immismum discussed above to see if they will take interstate candidates over Telehealth (a little ironic!)
Most of the current research, while still obviously promoting rest, no longer supports total bed-rest, screen banning, etc after 48 hours. Gentle re-introduction of schooling activities, as symptoms allow, followed by slow commencement of sport, as symptoms allow. I think this is particularly important with social/active adolescents, as I can see how quickly they could slide in to depression.

DS17 feels that it was worth going to school today, (they finally got their yr 12 jackets!) as he isn't any worse, although is totally exhausted - which will hopefully help him sleep better. But he is also keen to stay home for the rest of the week. He is going to try 20 mins of computer time tomorrow with his sunglasses on, brightness down, and night-mode on. He is going to work on an easy assignment. He mentioned to his English teacher that he is ok watching TV, so she has suggested that he put all current essay writing on hold indefinitely, and start watching movies that he might want to use as his two comparative texts for the comparative piece that is worth 30%. So that is his other homework for this week - find another movie with a theme that he can compare to "Knives Out" - something along the lines of greed. I think he feels that this will be manageable.
Other than that, he will be playing a lot of guitar, as that is probably his only non social, non-active leisure interest, and something he can currently. manage really well with his concussion.

Back to the GP later this week, as I am assuming the school will need a medical certificate, given he will have 3 days off. Slowly does it!
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#23

Good luck @Lees75 sounds like you've got everything under control for now.

Not sure if it'll help but you can get prescription glasses with tinted lenses that reduce glare. I found them better for trying to work with a migraine than my bog standard sunnies.
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#24

Lees75 wrote: Tue Apr 27, 2021 11:27 pm Thanks for all your support :)
I have emailed the program director that immismum discussed above to see if they will take interstate candidates over Telehealth (a little ironic!)
Most of the current research, while still obviously promoting rest, no longer supports total bed-rest, screen banning, etc after 48 hours. Gentle re-introduction of schooling activities, as symptoms allow, followed by slow commencement of sport, as symptoms allow. I think this is particularly important with social/active adolescents, as I can see how quickly they could slide in to depression.
OP, 3 of my kids have had concussions but only one of them was enrolled in a similar research program at the local children's hospital & Uni. The protocol up here is similar; general rest for a short while and re-introduction of activities with no set time but rather based on results. In essence, keep doing the activities unless it results in a headache, at which point you scale back for a bit. Try again, see how that goes, etc. Certainly no impact activities (e.g. swimming was ok, but running wasn't).

My child who followed this protocol did much better than the first sibling who had a concussion and was on prolonged dark room, rest, etc. They both suffered the concussion while playing the same sport, similar type of injury. The 3rd child suffered the concussion in their early 20s and had a much longer recovery.
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Lees75
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#25

UPDATE:
Up until today, he has been going quite well. He went for a jog last Thursday and had a bit of a headache afterwards, but nothing ongoing. He did all his usual socialising on the weekend, but with no sport, and by Sunday, he had no headache and hadn't taken any drugs. He went to school yesterday - came home exhausted, but no headache, only having tablets once, during assembly which was loud. (They have a band). He decided not to play basketball, but ran around a bit with the boys and felt fine last night and this morning.

Today in P.E. they started football for the term. Because it is mixed gender, they could allocate to not get tackled by wearing a sash, which he did. He felt fine immediately afterwards and then walked the school cross country and still felt fine, until he got on the tram after school. I could tell when I picked him up from the bus-stop that he was not good.

He has already ruled himself out of football training tonight, and selection for Saturday, and had messaged the coach. Unfortunately, he is supposed to be doing the True Grit obstacle course on Sunday for one of his Yr 12 subjects, but now knows he won't be able to do a 13km army style course. He is devastated, poor kid. We composed and sent an email to the teacher and vice principal to find out what he will need to do for SACE.

Other than Maths Methods, he is not really worrying about any of his other subject assignments, as he knows he will be able to catch up eventually and all the teachers have told him to take his time.
Lisa
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