WHY? Concussion Testing
Concussions one of the most common, and one of the most difficult to manage injuries seen in sports today – and news of these injuries and the sometimes chronic and serious outcomes that follow – have been making headlines across the country. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, between 1.6 million and 3.8 million brain injuries occur in sports each year – and 63,000 occur in high school athletes alone. With recent advances in neuroscience sports medicine clinicians are discovering new and better methods to protect your brain health.
Sports concussion experts have agreed that the diagnosis of acute concussion usually involves the assessment of a range of domains including clinical symptoms, physical signs, behavior, balance, sleep and cognition. Furthermore, a detailed concussion history is an important part of the evaluation both in the injured athlete and when conducting a pre-participation examination. The detailed clinical assessment of concussion is outlined in the SCAT2 form (see RESOURCES).
The suspected diagnosis of concussion can include one or more of the following clinical domains:
Symptoms - somatic (eg, headache), cognitive (eg, feeling like in a fog) and/or emotional symptoms (eg, lability).
Physical Signs (eg, loss of consciousness, amnesia).
Behavioral Changes (eg, irritability).
Neurocognitive Impairment (eg, slowed reaction times).
Sleep Disturbance (eg, drowsiness).
Sports concussion experts recommend that if any one or more of these components is present, a concussion should be suspected and the appropriate management strategy instituted.*
The CONCUSSIONS VITAL SIGNS Assessment Platform helps athletic trainers and other qualified clinicians collect valuable information on the above mentioned clinical domains. The Concussion Vital Signs neurocognitive testing helps clinicians evaluate and describe the neurocognitive health or higher functions of the brain, such as the impairment seen in mild traumatic brain injuries (mTBI) or CONCUSSIONS.
To LEARN MORE
The National Academy of Neuropsychology (NAN) and National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA) have joined forces on the Raising Concussion Awareness campaign to educate the public, athletes, health professionals, coaches, parents, administrators and others about concussion in sports.
CLICK HERE to watch and download the latest video, "Concussions in Football: Signs, Symptoms and Playing Safe."
CLICK HERE to view and download the first video, "Concussions in Hockey: Signs, Symptoms and Playing Safe."
*Adapted from: Consensus Statement on Concussion in Sport: the 3rd International Conference on Concussion in Sport held in Zurich, November 2008