Implementation of Newly Revised Concussion Management Protocol Illustrated by Three Case Studies

by Danielle Hemingson and Samantha Narveson
Athletic Training
Faculty advisor: Dr. Chris Todden

The Center for Disease Control states that there are approximately 300,000 sport-related concussions that are reported each year in the United States. Currently there is no universally excepted protocol which means bringing an athlete back to play as soon as possible while being cautious is difficult.

The Buena Vista University Athletic Training Department has invested in a program that measures both physical and cognitive homeostatic changes as protocol for the management of concussive injuries. This procedure is comprehensive and forthright, and in many cases allows an athlete a return to play option with greater confidence from the medical staff for their safety.

Comments

Three case studies were presented to illustrate the implementation and results of the use of the newly designed protocol.

Knowing that the history of concussion evaluation is based on signs and symptoms the value of neurocognitive testing has become evident. There are a variety of these computerized tests that take under half an hour to complete and are easily accessed. The advantages of computerized testing means data acquired can be easily stored and can therefore be accessed at a later date. Moreover, a computerized approach permits more accurate measurement of the cognitive processes such as reaction time and information process speed. We hope by using Neurocognitive testing as part of our protocol will aid in answering the question of the date of return, making our management of these situations more clear.