Sportz Connection





Monday, 06 February 2012 00:59

A Parents Experience with Youth Concussions

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Note: This was originally written in Feburary 2012 but was moved to a new section in 2013...

A recent trip to the Local Urgent Care tonight really opened my eyes to the true state of awareness of the dangers of concussion's and the sad state of some of our local medical professionals...

I had to take my teenage son to Urgent Care tonight due to an injury he had suffered the day before while snowboarding (Compression Fracture in his arm). While talking to the doctor about what happened we wandered into the discussion of concussion's since my daughter had to be rushed to the ER the day before for a concussion she had gotten when she had fallen during that the same trip.

I had mentioned to him that she was upset because the ER doctor said she had to abstain from all sports for a minimum of 7 days and her middle school basketball team has a big game this week for against another team that is really good.

His response: "That's baloney, concussion's aren't that serious. It's just their way (the medical community) of getting into your head and getting you scared". While he did admit that repeated hits to the head over years may cause some slight damage, he hinted that it should be OK for her to play and she wouldn't be in any danger....

I was stunned and speechless but it really didn't hit me until I got home, I was more concerned over my son's broken arm at the time.

Even I was aware that concussion's were serious, I just wasn't really aware of their true dangers until I started the LVSportz Foundation and started to take a deeper look into youth sports safety.

It wasn't until I started reading numerous studies and watching tons of video's from families with teenagers who have suffered massive changes to their lives after receiving back-to-back concussion's. These families have suffered through things with their kids such as losses to memory and learning functions to even death, try telling those parents it's not serious.

If it's not so serious, why has the state and the Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association started to pass laws such as AB 455.

AB 455 states that it: "requires the Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association to adopt a policy concerning the prevention and treatment of head injuries and concussions. The policy must require that a pupil who sustains or is suspected of sustaining an injury to the head while participating in such an activity or event: (1) be immediately removed from the activity or event; and (2) may not return to the activity or event unless the parent or legal guardian of the pupil provides a written statement from a provider of health care indicating that the pupil is medically cleared to participate and the date on which the pupil may return to the activity or event."

The next part, which many of you parents of School Athletes saw new this year, states that: "A pupil who participates in interscholastic activities and events and his or her parent or legal guardian must sign a form acknowledging that they have received a copy of the policy and understand its terms and conditions before the pupil’s participation in the activity or event and must sign the form on an annual basis."

I myself just recently had the chance of seeing this law work the way it was meant to when my son received a mild concussion from a head blow during a High School wrestling match back in December.

The minute he got hit and looked a little dazed, the Athletic trainer pulled him to the side and started the oral part of the ImPACT test which concluded that he did have a mild concussion.

From there, we were told that he would need to get a release in 5-7 days from his doctor (which we did). After that he was still not be able to fully participate until the school's athletic trainer monitored his progress for several days and he passed the computerized ImPACT test.

All in All it was about 2 weeks before he was able to return to full participation. While he wasn't happy about being out that long, he said he would rather miss a game or two than miss the chance to play again for the rest of his life.

The only issue I had with the test is that my son suffers from ADHD and has a learning disability. The reason this effected the test but shouldn't have is due to the fact the school had never completed a baseline test for him or the team. The baseline test is supposed to be done before taking part in an athletic activity so when a concussion is suspected they have something to compare the post-concussion test to.

When I asked his coach about it they said the school did not have the funds for the baseline tests. Schools and Organizations that use the test must pay for them and can usually do so in a bulk price format. I'm not sure how much the cost is per test.

The state (and other states across the nation) has these safegaurds put in place to protect our children for a reason.

So, Not That Serious Right???

While this doctor may not be a reflection of the entire local medical community, it does show that we still have a long way to go in our community when it comes to this particular matter.

Read 4498 times Last modified on Monday, 11 March 2013 13:09