More than 11% of Youth Athletes Report Diagnosed Concussion, per recent EyeGuide survey

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In a recent survey of 836 youth athletes, 11.6% of respondents had diagnosed concussions and most of these occurred before age 13.

This study reports that 17% of children have had injuries to their still developing brains, most occurring before age 13.

In a recent survey of 836 youth athletes, ages 13 to 18, at a public high school in Texas, 11.6%, or 97 athletes in total, reported that they had been diagnosed with a concussion. Another 59 indicated that they likely had a concussion that was not diagnosed. In all, almost 1 in 6 athletes in the surveyed population reported a concussion.

Concussion reporting was nearly equal for both males and females. Of the 306 females in the study, 30 or 9.8% reported a diagnosed concussion. 67 or 12.6% of 530 males reported a diagnosed concussion.

Interestingly, for both male and female athletes, the average age for diagnosed concussion was before age 13. In addition, a statistically significant finding was that athletes who began playing sports at age 5 had a 2.5 times more likely chance of having a concussion than athletes beginning play just one year later at age 6.

Further findings noted that football athletes reported the highest number of concussions, but athletes in other sports, including soccer, softball, volleyball, basketball, and baseball, also reported high numbers of concussions, meaning that the threat of concussion is not limited to just one sport.

A last finding of statistical significance was that those athletes with a family member who had been previously diagnosed with a concussion are 2.2 times more likely to have been diagnosed with a concussion than those without diagnosed family members.

“Although the total percentage of concussed athletes in this study is less than estimates from previous studies, they are no less concerning,” said Dr. Benedicto Baronia, a neurosurgeon who also directs a pediatric concussion clinic. “For whatever reason when we use the word concussion it seems to make it less alarming. This study reports that 17% of children have had injuries to their still developing brains, most occurring before age 13. That should be of great distress to parents, coaches, and healthcare professionals. It’s really a further call to action on better training, better detection, and better treatment.”

EyeGuide is in the early stages of testing an affordable but reliable 10-second concussion detection tool, EyeGuide® Focus, which has already showed promising results in screening for concussion as well as for monitoring the improvement of athletes so they can be cleared safely to return to play after concussion.

A report of the survey with complete results can be downloaded for free on EyeGuide’s web site. “We are committed as a company to creating a solution that everyone involved, from athletes to medical professionals, will trust,” said Greg Gamel, EyeGuide CEO. “Releasing this survey data to the general public is an invitation on our part to anyone interested in working with us. If you’re a researcher, an athletic director, athletic trainer, physician, or parent, help us make sports safer for our children.”

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