Jan 29, 2015
Playing Through Concussion

According to a study out of the University of Washington Sports Medicine Clinic in Seattle, many middle-school girls who who are concussed while playing soccer continue to play despite having symptoms.

The study, published in JAMA Pediatrics on Jan. 14, used e-mail to survey and interview 351 soccer players ages 11 to 14 years from club teams in the Puget Sound region of Washington. Researchers examined the frequency and duration of concussions, whether the injuries resulted in stoppage of play, and if they required medical attention. Within the population, 59 reported concussions. Of those who reported being concussed, symptoms lasted 9.4 days on average and 58.6 percent said that they continued to play despite having symptoms.

“Young athletes who get a concussion tend to underreport or minimize it because they don’t want to be taken out of play,” one of the study’s authors, Dr. Melissa Schiff, Professor of Epidemiology and Director of Education at the Harborview Injury Prevention and Research Center, told the University of Washington’s website. “Unless they tell their coach about it, coaches often aren’t aware of what happened.”

After football, the sport with the highest rate of concussions is women’s soccer. Last September, Training & Conditioning contributor Maria Hutsick, MS, LAT, ATC, CSCS, Head Athletic Trainer at Medfield (Mass.) High School and former Director of Sports Medicine at Boston University, wrote about concussion causes among female soccer player and offered new ideas on prevention.

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