The Ability of Vestibular and Oculomotor Screenings to Predict Recovery in Patients After Concussion: A Systematic Review of the Literature

J Athl Train. 2024 Jan 1;59(1):49-65. doi: 10.4085/1062-6050-0429.22.


Objective: The objective of this systematic review was to investigate if a positive vestibular or oculomotor screening is predictive of recovery in patients after concussion.

Data sources: Using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines to search through PubMed, Ovid MEDLINE, SPORTDiscus, and the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL) and hand searches of included articles.

Study selection: Two authors evaluated all articles for inclusion and assessed their quality using the Mixed Methods Assessment Tool.

Data extraction: After quality assessment was completed, the authors extracted recovery time, vestibular or ocular assessment results, study population demographics, number of participants, inclusion and exclusion criteria, symptom scores, and any other outcomes of assessments reported in the included studies.

Data synthesis: Data were critically analyzed by 2 of the authors and categorized into tables regarding the ability of researchers of each article to answer the research question. Many patients who have vision, vestibular, or oculomotor dysfunction appear to have longer recovery times than patients who do not.

Conclusions: Researchers routinely reported that vestibular and oculomotor screenings are prognostic of time to recovery. Specifically, a positive Vestibular Ocular Motor Screening test appears to consistently predict longer recovery.

Keywords: concussion; recovery; traumatic brain injury; vestibular.

Publication types

  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Brain Concussion* / diagnosis
  • Humans
  • Prognosis