ever, the vast majority of young athletes practice and play in circumstances where trained personnel are not routinely available to make sideline injury assessments, and the responsibility for determining whether to remove an athlete from play falls on coaches, parents, players, and, perhaps, officials. A further impediment to identification is that symptoms may not become apparent for several hours after injury, and one result of this is that a large number of concussions are not identified until 24 hours or more after the injury (Duhaime et al., 2012; McCrory et al., 2013b). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Heads Up campaign is designed to educate coaches, parents, and athletes about the prevention and recognition of and response to concussions (CDC, 2012a). A central feature of the campaign is the dissemination of information about the signs and symptoms of concussion (see Table 3-1) along with the message that players suspected of having sustained a concussion should be removed from play for the remainder of the day, referred to a health care provider for evaluation, and not permitted to return to play until they have been cleared by a health professional trained in concussion diagnosis and management (CDC, 2012a).
The sideline evaluation of a player’s symptoms may be complicated by the tendency of athletes to underreport their symptoms (Anderson et al., 2013; Dziemianowicz et al., 2012; McCrea et al., 2004). A 2004 study
|Signs Observed||Symptoms Reported by Athlete|
SOURCE: Based on CDC, 2012b.