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Facts and Misconceptions about Concussions
A concussion usually occurs when the head accelerates and then is stopped suddenly or it is spun rapidly. Many people incorrectly believe that a concussion is a bruise to the brain caused by the head hitting a hard surface. In fact, bleeding or bruising of the brain is typically not seen during radiological exams after a concussion has been sustained. Symptoms of a concussion often include confusion, blurred vision, memory loss, nausea and sometimes unconsciousness.
Football Student Athletes at Greatest Risk for Concussions
According to a 2005-08 study conducted by the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital approximately 130,000 concussions are reported by high school athletes each year. Football athletes had the highest incident of reported concussions with approximately 55,000 of them, followed by girls and boys soccer. A 2007 study found a higher rate of football catastrophic head injuries at the high school level than at the college level. According to the 2010 NCAA Catastrophic Injury Insurance Program data concussions are the second most common injury in football.
Key concussion statistics
- 42% of student athletes who suffered a concussion returned to the game too soon after the injury
- 16% of student athletes who suffered a concussion and lost consciousness returned to play the same day
- 18% of Second Impact Syndrome (SIS) victims are under the age of 18. SIS is a condition in which a second concussion occurs before the injured person has healed from their first. SIS symptoms can include rapid and severe brain swelling that can cause death. Even a very mild second concussion can result in SIS.
- Neurologists believe once a person suffers a concussion they could be 4 times more likely to sustain a second one and after several concussions it takes less force to cause another one.
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