Recovery from concussion may take longer for a female athlete than their male counterpart. In a study from the University of Pittsburgh by Alexis Chiang Colvin, M.D., reported at the American Orthopaedic Society meeting in Orlando, female soccer players were noted to have lower neurocognitive scores and reported more symptoms than male peers after a concussion.
This is important for players and coaches in responding to concussion injuries among female athletes. Players with prior concussion histories had more problems with overall memory, reaction time and visual processing speed. Coaches need to be vigilant in noting athletes with prior concussive injuries and acting conservatively to remove them from play. For players without a history of concussion it is important to rapidly identify a potential concussion and make the important decision to have the individual further evaluated. Returning athletes with potential concussion to play can result in additional injuries and greater risk for long term neurocognitive problems.