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, 34 (2), 259-277

A Commentary for Neuropsychologists on CDC's Guideline on the Diagnosis and Management of Mild Traumatic Brain Injury Among Children

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A Commentary for Neuropsychologists on CDC's Guideline on the Diagnosis and Management of Mild Traumatic Brain Injury Among Children

Kelly Sarmiento et al. Clin Neuropsychol.

Abstract

Objective: In 2018, the Centers for Disease Control Prevention (CDC) published an evidence-based guideline on the diagnosis and management of mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) among children. This commentary summarizes the key recommendations in the CDC Pediatric mTBI Guideline most relevant for neuropsychologists and discusses research gaps and topics that should receive attention in future iterations of the Guideline.Method: We described the methods used to develop the Guideline, which included a comprehensive Systematic Review. We also distilled and presented key practice strategies reflected in Guideline.Results: To optimize care of pediatric patients with mTBI, neuropsychologists should: use validated, age-appropriate symptom scales, assess evidence-based risk factors for prolonged recovery, provide patients with instructions on return to activity customized to their symptoms, and counsel patients to return gradually to nonsports activities after a short period of rest. Future iterations of the Guideline should encompass a review and guidance on care of patients with psychiatric and psychological difficulties, as well as the potential use of imaging to assess patients with persistent symptoms. Expanded research on mTBI among girls, children age 8 and under, and effective treatments for pediatric mTBI will be beneficial to inform care practices.Conclusions: Recommendations in the CDC Pediatric mTBI Guideline highlight multiple opportunities for neuropsychologists to take action to improve the care of young patients with mTBI and to advance research in the field. Multiple resources and tools are available to support implementation of these recommendations into clinical practice.

Keywords: Brain; TBI; concussion; guideline; injury.

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