Blog 61 – Charity cocktails and concussion

After trekking through the snow and arctic conditions I am pleased to say that all of the Cleve team made it into clinic and survived the snow day of 2019.  Although it wasn’t quite as bad as last year, there was still a few slippery patches.  I almost did a Gemma Collins Dancing On Ice special, but managed to save it…just about!

The near miss persuaded me to stick to the comfort of my own sofa the day after, and what better excuse to stay put than watching the Six Nations Rugby.  I couldn’t take my eyes off the England game, what a brilliant performance and result! England successfully made 181 tackles throughout the game with some huge hits. Although these guys are finely tuned athletes with immense strength and technique, their bodies still take a beating.  One of the injuries commonly seen in rugby is a concussion.  This has been a hot topic in rugby over the last few years. More research has gone into detection and treatment not only in elite players but also at grassroots level as well.

Concussion is a temporary injury to the brain following head trauma.  The common symptoms can include a headache, dizziness, feeling sick, confusion, memory loss, clumsiness or trouble with balance, visual changes, sudden mood swings or having difficulty concentrating.  Because of the variety of symptoms, concussion can sometimes be hard to pick up, and you don’t have to be knocked out to be concussed.  Symptoms can last from minutes to days, and can even come on a while after the incident.  Its not only rugby collisions that can lead to concussion.  Car accidents and falls may also cause similar symptoms.  So if you experience any of the above symptoms following a knock on the head it‘s important to seek medical advice, especially if they’re severe and don’t go away quickly. 

But this is a rare injury in day-to-day life, as we luckily don’t have to tackle a 20 stone international rugby player to get through the bread isle at Tesco.  If you are interested in the topic, especially for those keen rugby players, coaches or parents, the RFU has a great online module called Headcase, which provides lots of information on concussion and other related topics.

Speaking of raising awareness, on the weekend I went to an amazing charity ball in aid of BUST.  BUST is the Breast Cancer Unit Support Trust.  It is a Bristol based charity created by former patients that supports the Bristol Breast Care Centre at Southmead Hospital.  The funding goes towards advanced equipment such as state of the art scanners that help with the detection of breast cancer.  It was a fantastic night raising money for a brilliant cause. We had a lovely three course meal, plenty of wine, fund raising events throughout the night and a brilliant band that kept us all on the dance floor.  It really inspired awareness of the devastating disease and proved that we can all do our bit to help thousands of others in the future. Details of the charity can be found at

But for this weekend it’s a much quieter one for me, making sure I’ve got top spot on the sofa to watch an exciting Six Nations trip to our friends in Cardiff!