Athletic head injuries

Clin Sports Med. 1997 Jul;16(3):531-42. doi: 10.1016/s0278-5919(05)70038-7.


Recent studies have shown a decrease in mortality from head and neck injuries, especially in American football. This has resulted from rule changes and their enforcement, equipment modification, improved coaching and training techniques, and educational programs for neck injuries. Morbidity data, however, are not as complete, particularly as they apply to concussion, the most frequent type of head injury in contact sports. Questions on this condition that still need to be answered before a sound medical disposition can be made are the possible cumulative damage from repeated concussions, and whether one concussion renders a player more susceptible to a second. Currently, decisions on when to allow a football player to return to a game or participate in future contests are arbitrary and based primarily on the experience of the team physician. Certainly, further studies are essential before these decisions can be based on sound scientific data. Thus, the pioneer work of Richard Schneider needs to be continued.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Athletic Injuries*
  • Brain Injuries / diagnosis
  • Brain Injuries / epidemiology
  • Brain Injuries / therapy
  • Craniocerebral Trauma* / diagnosis
  • Craniocerebral Trauma* / epidemiology
  • Craniocerebral Trauma* / therapy
  • Emergency Medical Services / methods
  • Humans
  • Morbidity
  • Sports
  • Sports Medicine / methods
  • Survival Rate