Concussion incidences and severity in secondary school varsity football players

Am J Public Health. 1983 Dec;73(12):1370-5. doi: 10.2105/ajph.73.12.1370.


The head coaches and players of 103 secondary school football teams in Minnesota were asked to respond to mail questionnaires. Information about injury incidence and concomitant health care provision was elicited. Responses from 3,063 players (81 per cent) yielded a total injury rate of 78 injuries/100 players; 19/100 players reported a concussion experience characterized by loss of consciousness and/or loss of awareness. Of the players who experienced a loss of consciousness, 69 per cent were returned to play the same day. Persistent concussion symptoms were reported as long as six to nine months following the end of the season; six cases involved permanent disabilities. Continued use of illegal techniques of butt-blocking and face-tackling by as many as 40 per cent of the players was associated with apparent increased risks of concussions and concussion symptoms. Players with a prior history of loss of consciousness had a risk of loss of consciousness four times that of the player without a prior history.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Athletic Injuries / complications
  • Athletic Injuries / epidemiology*
  • Consciousness Disorders / etiology
  • Craniocerebral Trauma / complications
  • Craniocerebral Trauma / epidemiology*
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Football*
  • Humans
  • Minnesota
  • Retrospective Studies