The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and its concussion program have released what they think is a new model to predict how long each individual may take to recover. Lead researcher on this topic is Dr. Micky Collins who stated in a press release that this information is a “game changer”.
The study involves the ImPACT neurocognitive testing platform (developed by UPMC) and its results two days after injury. Although the actual score has not been released publicly; it will appear in the next issue of Neurosurgery. The benefits of such a specific diagnostic indicator would be tremendous for a lot of interested parties.
At the end of the press release/story Dr. Collins indicated something that is similar to what we posted yesterday; “Eighty percent of concussed people recover inside of three weeks.”
This information is all well and good but I would like to speak to some initial “wait a second” thoughts I have regarding this study;
- Why would you neurocognitive test anyone with symptoms, while still recovering?
- Are the numbers based upon the ImPACT “norms” or a baseline calculation?
- Is this experiment repeatable with other measures?
- Where are the control groups?
- Is the accuracy of ImPACT that sensitive (is there even one accurate enough to make this assessment)?
- What did each individual do for management of the concussion in the two days?
I am merely stating that there are flaws with this that need to be shored up before anyone calls it a game changer. I respect Dr. Collins, however, couldn’t you basically look at the symptom score at 2 days post and make a judgement on length of recovery? Add to that the management of the injury; those kids that did the “cocoon-like” therapy were they the ones who showed quicker recovery, versus those kids that did not heed the advice of complete rest.
Although I am questioning this information, more like hold on a second, others are much more critical of UPMC and their so-called drivel, look no further than Irv Muchnick;
I hope Alan Schwarz, the baseball statistics nerd who used his arithmetical wizardry to bring the football helmet industry to its knees, will come out of retirement as The New York Times’ concussion beat reporter and engage the latest outlandish claims of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Sports Concussion Program.
The moral of the story make sure all information is gathered before making judgements…