Barr, William B; McCrea, Michael
"Diagnosis and assessment of concussion"
IN: The handbook of sport neuropsychology / Webbe, Frank M [Ed].
New York, NY, US: Springer Publishing Co; US, 2011
- (from the chapter) It is now universally established that athletes experiencing the effects of concussion should refrain from competition until they are completely asymptomatic. In order to follow this rule, however, the clinician must be armed with sensitive and accurate measures for diagnosing and assessing concussion symptoms. Many specializing in the care arid treatment of athletes still consider the diagnosis and management of concussion as among the most difficult and challenging tasks they face on a regular basis. For many years medical personnel involved in the care of athletes were forced to make important decisions regarding the presence of concussion and whether an athlete was fit to return to play based solely on their experience and subjective observations. The past 15 years have been marked by a substantial increase in the evidence base on the signs and symptoms of concussion, as well as the true natural history of recovery after concussion. This body of work has driven us in the direction of a more evidence-based approach to diagnosis, assessment, and management of concussion. Included among these have been a number of guidelines for defining the presence of concussion and a number of methods for assessing its symptoms. While some of the information offered to clinicians has been established from results of empirical research, too much of it has been based on clinical folklore or 'expert' opinion. The goal of this chapter is to provide a brief survey of recent trends in diagnosis and assessment of sport concussion and a summary of the evidence-based literature.
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