American Academy Of Neurology Aims To Raise Bar On Potential Concussions
Issued by the American Academy of Neurology, the latest recommendations aim to keep young athletes as safe as possible.
“With the older guidelines, we were trying to rate concussions at the time of the injury and predict recovery times, but now we know, ’When in doubt, sit ’em out,’” said guideline co-author Dr. Christopher Giza, an associate professor of pediatric neurology and neurosurgery with the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles, and Mattel Children’s Hospital.
“The point is that no single quick test is really a litmus test for a concussion,” he said. “We know now that we need to make sure a player has had a thorough and proper evaluation, involving a symptoms checklist, a standardized assessment and balance and cognitive testing, before being returned to play. This evaluation has to be done on a case-by-case basis, so each person goes through an individualized recovery process.”
Giza and his colleagues reported the new guidelines in the March 18 online issue of the journal Neurology.
According to the academy, upwards of 1 million professional and amateur U.S. athletes suffer a concussion every year.