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Concussion and memory loss
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Concussion and memory loss

I had a minor motorcycle accident the other night as I pulled out of a parking lot.

My friend (who I had just eaten dinner with in a restaurant down the block) witnessed the accident and didn't think I had hit my head hard, so after checking me out he thought I was okay. I had to go to the bathroom badly just before the accident so I asked him if he could clear the motorcycle from the street and then wait for me while I returned to the restaurant to use the restroom. First I asked him to help me remove my helmet and jacket.

The next thing I remember I was sitting in a stall in the restroom not knowing how I had gotten there. I had no knowledge of just having an accident or telling my friend after the accident that I was going to go back to the restaurant to use the restroom. I only remembered that I had been in the restaurant a short while before eating dinner with my friend. I also realized that I had a lot of pain in my right shoulder, arm and hip and when I pulled up my sleeve I saw a large abrasion. I immediately came to the conclusion that I had been in a motorcycle accident but of course I didn't know where or when and so forth. When I came out of the restroom I went to the booth where my friend and I had been sitting during dinner and was surprised to find him gone and another couple sitting there. I started to feel like I was in the twilight zone or that I had gone mad. But, my rational side kicked in and I found the manager of the restaurant and told him that I believed that I had been in a motorcycle accident and had gotten a concussion because I couldn't remember the accident happening or where it happened. Since I had left my helmet, jacket and cell phone with my friend down the street I had no way of calling anyone. I asked the manager to call 911 so I could get to a hospital to get checked out. About 5 minutes later the police arrived and when I went outside to speak with them I saw my friend walking toward us. At that moment everything started to come back to me. I remembered that he was waiting for me with the crashed bike down the street, I remembered that I had come to the restaurant to use the bathroom and etc.

When the paramedics arrived they checked my blood pressure and it was normal. I had no nausea, dizziness or disorientation the whole time they were assessing me. To make a long story short, when I asked the paramedic what he thought had happened to me he concluded that I had suffered a concussion and the result was the brief period of retrograde amnesia. The ER doctor came to the same conclusion even after the CAT scan came back without any abnormalities and the X-rays showed no broken bones in my shoulder or arm.

However, my friend who witnessed the accident is convinced that I did not get a concussion and that the memory loss was somehow related to shock and a sudden drop in blood pressure due to my going to the bathroom (bowel movement) right after the accident.

Is it possible that my friend is correct? Could this complete loss of memory from just before the accident to the time I "found myself" sitting on the toilet in the stall of the restroom be just a symptom of shock or a sudden drop in blood pressure?
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Hope you have recovered from the accident. Yours could be a case of Transient Global Amnesia (TGA) following the accident. A low blood pressure episode following bowel movement is less likely if you have not experienced it before this particular incidence.

This may not be only a retrograde amnesia. If you notice, the amnesia is for a specific period, from the accident to the rest room. This could be an anterograde amnesia due the the accident induced TGA.

Thank you for your prompt response.

I have never experienced any kind of memory loss before this particular incidence.

I think you are right about the anterograde amnesia now that I have looked at both definitions for  retrograde and anterograde amnesia. When I "came to" in the restroom I had no coordination or balance problems and I didn't feel dizzy or light headed which I assume would be some of the symptoms of a sudden drop in blood pressure.
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