Sports Concussions: the evidence base for evaluation and management of concussions


We are becoming increasingly aware of sports concussions and the link between concussions and brain injuries. The retired NFL players who have come forward to speak about the long-term effects of the multiple concussions they experienced in the game have helped to shed light on the issues as have the unfortunate deaths by suicide of players like Junior Seau and Dave Dursen. The research into the long-term, compound effects of multiple concussions also has identified the clinical course of a chronic disease known as Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy or CTE with significant cognitive, psychological and emotional components.

Recently, the American Academy of Neurology published a summary article regarding the evaluation and management of sports concussions in the journal, Neurology. This article identifies the process of identifying individuals who have experienced concussion, establishes guidelines for managing the injury and discusses the risk for additional concussions as well as identifies the individuals who are at-risk for developing  neurobehavioral problems. There are sound practice guidelines in this article that are valuable to the clinician working with individuals with concussions.

Click here to read the pre-publication version of the article in Neurology.

About Rolf Gainer Ph.D.

Dr. Rolf Gainer is the founder of the Neurologic Rehabilitation Institute at Brookhaven Hospital in Tulsa, Oklahoma as well as the Neurological Rehabilitation Institute of Ontario, in Toronto, Canada. Dr. Gainer is a psychologist with more than twenty-five years of experience in the treatment and rehabilitation of individuals with brain injuries and a dual diagnosis. Dr. Gainer has designed and operated innovative rehabilitation programs in the United States and Canada for individuals who have been regarded as difficult to serve. He is currently involved in conducting two outcome studies related to the long-term issues faced by individuals with brain injuries and a dual diagnosis. He has presented papers throughout the United States and Canada in many professional conferences and educational forums.

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