Why Are We Here? Confusion and muddy water

With all the work that has been done up to this point with concussions I truly believe that we should have a better grasp on this injury.  Recently, we have seen some very confusing information come forward, I feel the message has been mixed and may lead to further issues when handling concussions.  Patrick Hruby, in his article on Sports on Earth, takes a very critical look at the Collins research as well as other studies that have pointed to the players being the problem in this concussion issue.

It is not the players fault, it’s not the referees fault, it’s not the coaches fault, it’s not the sports fault.

I do think that football and collision sports do require some sort of “full” practices in a controlled environment.  Although the actual speed of a game is difficult to replicate in a practice, full-go is needed for players to understand the closing speeds, angles and decision-making of the sport.  Without a full grasp on this the player may be at further risk for overall injury in sport.  It would be insane to have a football, hockey Continue reading

Athletic Trainers Needed not Need to be Cut

With the ever-growing current of law suits regarding about everything in life (see hot coffee) when a school district has the chance to diminish some of the risk why not take it.  Sure it is going to cost something up front, but why not be protected and give the coaches and administration some stress relief?  What is the cost for peace of mind?

The website PennLive.com recently ran a story, from the Patriot-Ledger and Stefanie Loh, about how the need for athletic trainers far outweighs the cost associated with the profession (thank you Chainsaw);

“We’ve been working on that for a while now, trying to really emphasize it,” said Janik, the head athletic trainer at King’s College in Wilkes-Barre. “But it’s tough, especially with all the budget cuts.”

With school districts across the state forced to cut corners to accommodate shrinking budgets, there are already indications that some might resort to eliminating athletic training positions to make ends meet.

The state in the story is Pennsylvania, where a recent study found that 81 percent of the high schools had access to an athletic trainer.  However eliminating that position may save some much-needed money, but what about those that are getting hurt, Continue reading

“Concussion is not the bogeyman”

This is a tried and true quote from Micky Collins of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center’s Sports Medicine Concussion Program.  As I have stated many times the injury itself is more than likely rather benign, IF TREATED CORRECTLY.  That is exactly what Collins is preaching; management of the initial injury is of the most importance.

“As we peel the onion on this injury and we started doing more and more research and more and more clinical work, it’s like, wow, this is really something that needs to be dealt with, and you have to do it very carefully,” said Micky Collins…

Researchers and doctors figured out that, despite their serious nature, concussions can be effectively treated. If managed correctly, Collins said, the potential for long-term effects can be mitigated.

Ignoring the signs and symptoms of a concussion is the first step to mistreating the injury, therefore the awareness of what a concussion is and the subsequent treatment will make it easier to handle.  Clinicians and “front-line” professionals have been given more technology and research to help with the detection of the concussion.  However, the MOST IMPORTANT tool Continue reading