Cerebral Concussion: Causes, Effects, and Risks in Sports

J Athl Train. 2001 Sep;36(3):307-311.


OBJECTIVE: To characterize the causes, effects, and risks associated with concussion in sports. BACKGROUND: Concussion is an injury associated with sports and is most often identified with boxing, football, ice hockey, and the martial arts. In addition, recent research has shown that concussion occurs in many different sports. In the decade of the 1990s, concussion became a primary issue for discussion among the media, sports sponsors, sports medicine professionals, and athletes. DESCRIPTION: Concussion is an injury that results from a wide variety of mechanisms and has numerous signs and symptoms that are common to different types of injury. Continued improvement in prevention and management strategies for concussion requires a strong body of research from a variety of different disciplines. It is essential that research efforts focus on both prevention and management and that researchers and clinicians work closely toward their common goals. CONCLUSIONS/RECOMMENDATIONS: Until the research community is able to provide sound recommendations for the prevention and management of the concussion, the care of the injured player falls squarely on the clinician. It is important for sports medicine professionals to continue to stay up to date on the advances in understanding concussions and how to care individually for each player who sustains a concussion.