Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Junior ice hockey study uncovers alarming concussion rates

Date:
November 5, 2010
Source:
American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS)
Summary:
A study on Canadian junior ice hockey uncovers alarming head injury/concussion data and trends that raise many questions about the safety and well being of teenagers and young adults who participate in this popular sport.

A new study on Canadian junior ice hockey uncovers alarming head injury/concussion data and trends that raise many questions about the safety and well being of teenagers and young adults who participate in this popular sport.
Credit: iStockphoto/Tony Tremblay

A groundbreaking study on Canadian junior ice hockey published in the November 2010 Neurosurgical Focus uncovers alarming head injury/concussion data and trends that raise many questions about the safety and well being of teenagers and young adults who participate in this popular sport. Companion articles and editorial discuss return-to-play issues, the importance of increasing concussion awareness through education, and social/cultural behaviors. The case studies in the editorial provide compelling, firsthand accounts detailing the devastating impact concussions have on young athletes.

The cumulative and long-lasting effects of sports concussions have been the subject of recent heightened attention, including Congressional hearings in the U.S. In Canada, ice hockey is a major cause of sports-related concussion. "The aftermath of a concussion can impact memory, judgment, social conduct, reflexes, speech, balance and coordination. Epidemiological studies have suggested an association between sport concussions and both immediate and later-life cognitive impairment. As such, this is a public health issue that needs to be taken more seriously by players, parents, coaches, and medical professionals," said Dr. Echlin.

This is the first study to document the incidence of concussion in junior hockey players based on the 2009 Zurich consensus statement on concussions from the 3rd International Conference on Concussion in Sport. The Hockey Concussion Education Project (HCEP), a prospective cohort study was conducted during one junior hockey regular season (2009-2010) with 67 male ice-hockey players, ages 16-21 from two fourth-tier teams. Prior to the start of the season, players underwent baseline assessments using the Sideline Concussion Assessment Test (SCAT2) and the Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Test (ImPACT).

  • Concussion surveillance was done at each regular season game of the participating teams by one independent physician and one to three independent, non-physician observers. Among the key study findings:
  • Seventeen players suffered a total of 21 concussions during the 52 physician-observed games.
  • Twenty-nine percent (5/17) of the HCEP players suffered a second or recurrent concussion during the study period.
  • Eighty-eight percent (15/17) of the players with a diagnosed concussion admitted to having suffered at least one concussion in the past. Two of the seventeen players who suffered a concussion during the study admitted that they had concealed a concussion sustained during the current season in order to keep playing.
  • The forward position suffered 71 percent of the concussions; defensemen 29 percent; and no concussions were incurred by goalies.
  • Fifty-seven percent of diagnosed concussions occurred in the third period, 29 percent in the second period, and 14 percent in the first period.
  • Twenty-four percent (5/21) of the HCEP concussions occurred in players who were directly involved in a fight immediately prior to their diagnosis.
  • The mean clinical return-to-play duration in 15 players was 12.8 days.
  • Players in the education intervention groups demonstrated a positive trend toward concussion knowledge retention compared to the control group.

"This study showed a disturbing lack of compliance by the athletes to undergo requested neuropsychological evaluations and multiple physician visits, as well as a lack of understanding about the seriousness of concussion. Complaints from players, coaches, and parents about this testing gave further credence to the importance of raising awareness about the serious long-term implications of concussions through education, which does appear to be beneficial according to our findings," said Dr. Tator.

"The reluctance to report concussion symptoms may result from cultural factors, as expressed in several of the case studies -- athletes demonstrate perceived toughness to their parents, coaches, team mates and peers by playing through an injury; and the belief of the athlete that he or she is invincible, so winning overrides any consideration of the effect of the injury upon long-term health. It is imperative to bring about a cultural and philosophical change in this regard through stepped-up education efforts and enforcement of concussion protocols. At risk is something far more precious than winning a game, and that is the future health and well being of thousands of young athletes," concluded Dr. Echlin.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Paul Sean Echlin, Charles H. Tator, Michael D. Cusimano, Robert C. Cantu, Jack E. Taunton, Ross E. G. Upshur, Craig R. Hall, Andrew M. Johnson, Lorie A. Forwell, Elaine N. Skopelja. A prospective study of physician-observed concussions during junior ice hockey: implications for incidence rates. Neurosurgical FOCUS, 2010; 29 (5): E4 DOI: 10.3171/2010.9.FOCUS10186

Cite This Page:

American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS). "Junior ice hockey study uncovers alarming concussion rates." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 November 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101105153213.htm>.
American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS). (2010, November 5). Junior ice hockey study uncovers alarming concussion rates. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101105153213.htm
American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS). "Junior ice hockey study uncovers alarming concussion rates." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101105153213.htm (accessed April 25, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Friday, April 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Could Marijuana Use Lead To Serious Heart Problems?

Could Marijuana Use Lead To Serious Heart Problems?

Newsy (Apr. 24, 2014) A new study says marijuana use could lead to serious heart-related complications. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Study Says Most Crime Not Linked To Mental Illness

Study Says Most Crime Not Linked To Mental Illness

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) A new study finds most crimes committed by people with mental illness are not caused by symptoms of their illness or disorder. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Smaller Plates And Cutlery Could Make You Feel Fuller

How Smaller Plates And Cutlery Could Make You Feel Fuller

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) NBC's "Today" conducted an experiment to see if changing the size of plates and utensils affects the amount individuals eat. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Do We Get Nicer With Age?

Do We Get Nicer With Age?

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) A recent report claims personality can change over time as we age, and usually that means becoming nicer and more emotionally stable. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins