NHL Concussion Report 12/8/11

8 Dec

Last month during our concussion report for the NHL we noted an encouraging decrease (23%) in concussions/head injuries over the previous year.  Now that difference is (2%) as 13 more injuries have been exposed over the past month.  One situation we will not be classifying is the current Sidney Crosby issues.

Crosby and the Penguins are making a bold and correct statement by not traveling with the team during the current road trip.  Reportedly Crosby is not quite 100% and the team does not want to take the chance of another concussion occurring after a big hit he sustained in the previous game.

It is worth noting that in the associated article that Sidney “passed” his ImPACT test but still is being held out of action.  We have heard from many entities (including uninformed school boards/districts) that passing a nerocognitive test (ImPACT in almost all cases) would be enough to allow a player to continue.  Heck the NFL uses the “passing the concussion test” as its standard operating procedure to allow players to play the next week.  However between practice where he was talking of the upcoming game and his medical consult it was deemed that he would not be playing, even with the information that he passed the test;

“Sidney took a hard hit during our game against Boston Monday night and wasn’t feeling 100 percent,” Penguins general manager said in the statement. “He saw Dr. Mickey Collins of UPMC today and took an ImPACT (neurocognitive) test, which showed no problems. However, we all think it’s best that he sits out the next two games as a precaution.”

This is a perfect example to show that ImPACT test results are not the benchmark for return to play, even when administered correctly with a baseline to compare it to.  It really boils down to the clinical evaluation and judgement of the treating health care provider.  Even though it is being deemed a “precaution” obviously something is amiss because Sidney is not playing.  Good job Sidney and Penguins for being somewhat honest about the situation, it sets a good example for all those looking on.

Now on to the stats for this month (using 27 games as the average);

  • 0.04 Head/Concussion per Game
  • 1.33 Head/Concussion per “Game Night”
  • 5.22% of the active NHL roster has been affected
  • Team Breakdown:
    • CLB, MIN – 4
    • PIT – 3
    • BOS, BUF, COL, DET, NAS, NYI, STL – 2
    • CAL, CHI, DAL, EDM, FLA, NJ, NYR, OTW, PHX, TOR, WAS – 1
    • ANA, CAR, LA, MON, PHI, SJ, TB, VAN, WIN – 0
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4 Responses to “NHL Concussion Report 12/8/11”

  1. Kenn December 10, 2011 at 20:43 #

    What’s going on…the Pens now have 4 players out with concussion symptoms…change the equipment…it is too large and too hard…the glass is less forgiving…put the red line back in play…there is way too much speed and make the NHL play on Olympic size ice…yes NHL that means removing some seats…Let’s see if you really care about the players…or is it all about the money ?…Yeah , that’s what I thought

    • Jim December 14, 2011 at 13:56 #

      Kenn, 3 of those 4 concussions were a result of dirty hits. Only 1 of those hits were disciplined and none of those were disciplined during the game. The NHL doesn’t have it’s act together in terms of protecting their players.

      As of right now, there have been more concussions this season at this point than last season. I’ve noticed a lack of respect between the players and its disheartening. The league needs consistent discipline.

      I also believe the league needs to adjust the armor the modern day players wear. The guys used to hit hard in the old days, but they had more respect and less hard plastic on their bodies.

  2. zach January 20, 2012 at 09:12 #

    The players have less inent to hurt players in today’s hockey than in yrs past. I’ve been watching/playing hockey for 30 yrs. Unfortunately in today’s NHL the lighter equipment (not to be confused with less protective), better skates, and stronger players, has evolved players into weapons. They are moving 30-35 miles per hour and skating into one another. The hits and checking is not what has changed. The size and speed of the players is what has changed. Its not rocket science. How do we solve? I am not sure a larger ice rink helps this problem. Laregr ice rink and larger goals will get us more 50 goals scorers, sure, but i dont think it prevents concussions. More ice means more space for players to generate more speed. The more speed that is generated by players prior to impact with another player would most likely cause more Concussions. 1.) The equipment needs to be anlayzed further. Also, if the main goal is to reduce concussions they will need to tighten up more on penalties/game misconducts for delayed hits.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Red Light » Posts Crosby again the face of the NHL’s entrenched concussion problem « - December 14, 2011

    [...] that the season was still young. Now, just one month later, concussions have spiked and Fink estimated last week that with 13 additional traumatic head injuries in the preceding four weeks, the difference between [...]

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