Leading-Edge Concession Testing, Treatment and Management
Experts at the Concussion Management Program at University Hospitals believe that concussion testing is an essential component for concussion management. Our concussion specialists work closely with schools and sports organizations, youth through professional, to provide reliable computerized concussion testing that is done at multiple sites across Northeast Ohio.
Baseline Computerized Testing
Athletes who are older than 12 years old are encouraged to undergo baseline computerized testing prior to any athletic season. Youth organizations with athletes ages 5-12 can also participate in a baseline testing program, though this requires administration of paper and pencil tests by trained concussion experts. The UH Concussion Management Program offers concussion testing for all athletes, youth through adult, in order to provide the most sensitive and sophisticated methods for managing concussions and safely returning athletes to play, while also minimizing risk of further injury and complication.
With a pre-season baseline assessment, athletes have a standardized evaluation of their individualized function that will later be used for management of a concussion should one occur. In addition to obtaining some background information, baseline concussion testing includes measures that assess:
- Reaction time
- Speed of mental processing
Baseline and post-concussion testing are an important part of helping health care providers decide when it is safe to return to sports; however, concussion testing may also be obtained even if baseline testing was not completed. When completed by a specialist, testing after a concussion (even if no baseline was completed) can be very useful in assisting in concussion management and helping to make decisions about how to return back to school and normal activities.
Concussion Testing Services
All UH-affiliated organizations are provided computerized concussion testing services, at no charge, including:
- Assistance in implementing the testing at their school or facility
- Consultation as needed in complex cases
- Education regarding administration
- Interpretation of the testing by specialized experts
Individual athletes and unaffiliated teams can also schedule baseline testing directly at one of 11 UH testing locations by calling 216-983-PLAY. Unaffiliated athletes will be charged a $10 administrative fee for baseline testing.
After testing and evaluation, members of our multidisciplinary concussion management team will develop a treatment recommendation based on the unique needs and symptoms of the athlete. Initial treatment will include a period of rest followed by a gradual return to activities. Treatment plans may include the following restrictions, based on the extent of injury:
- Limit activities that require extended concentration to 20 to 30 minute blocks
- Limit TV time, cell phone use/texting, video games and computer time
- Do not exercise unless cleared by a doctor
- Avoid leisure activities such as bike-riding or anything else where another head injury could occur
- Get a good night’s sleep; no late nights or sleepovers
- Avoid loud noises, bright lights and overly stimulating activity
- No loud music, including concerts and dances
- No sporting event attendance
Because every athlete and concussion is different, individuals should consult their doctor with questions or concerns for the best treatment and recovery outcomes.