Earlier this month, medpagetoday.com posted an interesting article about a new assessment tool for the detection of concussions in athletes. Called DETECT (Display Enhanced Testing for Concussions and Mild Traumatic Brain System), the tool is supposed to be a 7-minute screen for injuries occuring immediately in the field.
While the idea of providing immediate assessment sounds like a step in the right direction, there are some inherent problems with a “quick-fix” mentality when it comes to brain injuries. If an athlete is even suspected of suffering a concussion during play, it is extremely important that the person does not continue engaging in the activity until a complete examination can be administered; the risks are simply too great for post-concussive syndrome.
Unfortunately, medical decisions like these occur far too often in athletics. We can only hope that with the right amount of prevention education, we can someday begin to see a drop in the numbers of TBI-related incidents occuring on the field.