Sports Concussion

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Sports Concussion Management Program

Concussion in sports is common. Approximately 10% of all athletes involved in contact sports suffer a concussion each season. Proper healing and recovery time following a concussion are crucial in preventing further injury.

The doctors at the Brain and Behavior Clinic have completed extensive training and been granted elite status as Certified Consultants utilizing ImPACT©, a computerized program designed to accurately detect and assess sports related concussions. ImPACT is currently used extensively by teams in the NFL, NHL, MLB, USOC, and numerous colleges and high schools across the nation. Measuring memory, attention, reaction rime, and processing speed, the program provides the doctors with specific information regarding the severity of the injury and a standard for evaluating recovery.

Did you know:

  • Second Impact Syndrome occurs when an athlete is sent back into the game or practice session prematurely, exposing him or her to a second concussion, and potentially causing permanent brain injury, coma, and/or death.
  • Repeated concussions can have an additive effect, lowering the threshold for symptoms from future concussions and potentially leading to permanent cognitive injury, called Chronic Traumatic Brain Injury.

Concussion Symptoms can include:

  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Balance problems
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Trouble falling asleep
  • Sleeping more than usual
  • Sleeping less than usual
  • Drowsiness
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Sensitivity to noise
  • Irritability Sadness
  • Nervousness
  • Feeling more emotional
  • Numbness or tingling
  • Feeling slowed down
  • Feeling mentally foggy
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Difficulty remembering
  • Visual problems

We Recommend:

  1. Pre-season baseline cognitive testing of all athletes involved in contact sports.
  2. Following a concussion, the athlete is removed from the activity and is retested to determine if and when the concussion is resolved.
  3. Once the concussion symptoms have resolved and there is no evidence of cognitive changes based on re-testing, the athlete returns to a light work out schedule.
  4. Under medical supervision, the athlete then increases activity and returns to play if asymptomatic.

Risk factors for sustaining concussions:

  • Younger athletes
  • Female athletes
  • History of previous concussions or neurologic conditions
  • Hard contact sports including football, ice hockey, wrestling, soccer, and lacrosse.


  • One in 10 high school athletes involved in contact sports sustain a concussion each year.
  • 63% of all concussions occur in football.
  • Concussion signs and symptoms vary among athletes.
  • Multiple concussions can have a cumulative effect.
  • An athlete who sustains a concussion is 4-6 times more likely to sustain a second concussion.
  • Even seemingly mild concussions can have significant effects.
  • Amnesia appears to be the best indicator of concussion severity.
  • Complete recovery can be expected following a concussion, as long as the athlete does not return to play too soon.
  • Symptoms of persistent headaches likely indicate incomplete recovery.
  • High school athletes may take longer to recover from concussion than college athletes.

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