By Dev K. Mishra, M.D., President, Sideline Sports Doc
As we gear up for fall and winter sports I’m going to take the next several weeks to briefly explore various topics related to concussion. Fall sports such as football and soccer, and winter sports such as hockey have higher rates of concussion than other sports so it’s important for coaches and parents to have a solid grounding in the basic principles of recognition and management.
The Sport Concussion Library
Where I’d like to start first is by pointing our readers towards a tremendous objective reference source for publications relating to concussion, the Sport Concussion Library. This library is a free resource to anyone, and was set up by Canadian physician, Paul Echlin M.D. Dr. Echlin states that the library was set up “for parents to protect their children’s health”.
There are sections specific to hockey, football, soccer, baseball and several other sports, as well as a section containing concussion research conducted by the military. Entries range from a simple definition of a concussion and information for parents, players and coaches, to the latest research papers.
The point of a site such as the Sport Concussion Library is that each of us have to be proactive about this issue. Various leagues and governing bodies have differing opinions on official policy towards concussion. As parents, coaches, and team physicians it’s important for us to take the initiative and understand the facts as we know them from the hype and pseudo-science. Recognition, management, and return to play after concussion are evolving topics with new research findings presented several times a year at major medical conferences.
Over the next several weeks we’ll take a look at different aspects of concussion, focusing on the practical aspects of importance to a coach or parent. Here are some topics coming up:
- Sideline concussion detection: where are we going?
- Concussion sensing technology
- New helmet developments
- A simple sideline and on-field evaluation method for coaches
- Will concussions “take the hit” out of football and hockey?
Concussion 101: The Video
Here’s where I’d like you to start our journey: with an excellent video titled “Concussions 101” conceived and presented by Dr. Mike Evans, a Canadian physician. There are many videos on concussion basics available on the web but Dr. Evans has built a style around his presentations that is clear and effective. I think you’ll get a lot out of this one, see you next week.