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High School Football Players Know Little About Concussions, Study Finds

High School Football Players Know Little About Concussions, Study Finds

Even with all of the awareness campaigns that now exist for athletes, a new study found that high school football players don't know about the consequences of a concussion.

The new study, conducted by the University of Florida, "found that high school football players still don't know enough about the symptoms and consequences of this type of head injury," said an article on HealthDay.com.

"More than 300,000 people are treated in emergency rooms every year for brain injuries related to sports, the researchers reported," the article said. "And, it's estimated that up to 3.8 million concussions are sustained annually during sporting and recreational events. Half of these injuries involved football, according to the University of Florida researchers."

The study also found that "fewer than 50 percent of high school athletes are likely to report a concussion," said the article. It also found that "around one-quarter of college football players with symptoms of a concussion play."

"Our results showed that high school football players did not have appropriate knowledge of concussion. Even with parents or guardians signing a consent form indicating they discussed concussion awareness with their child, nearly half of the athletes suggested they had not," said study co-author Brady Tripp, from the University of Florida, said in a National Athletic Trainers' Association.

The findings, HealthDay said, are "especially worrisome because young athletes are more vulnerable to the effects of a concussion, including post-concussion syndrome [persistent symptoms after a concussion] and second impact syndrome [when the brain swells rapidly and seriously after a repeat concussion]."

"Most students knew that headache, dizziness and confusion were signs of a concussion," the article said. "But, many didn't know that nausea, vomiting, neck pain, grogginess, difficulty concentrating and personality or behavioral changes were also symptoms, the study found. The researchers noted that only a few of the athletes knew that a concussion could lead to brain hemorrhage, coma and death, if not properly treated."

"Athletic trainers and others that make up a school's sports medicine team should not assume programs available to coaches, parents and athletes will ensure education," Tripp said. "We recommend they work closely with athletes to reinforce this important information and potentially reduce the incidence of concussion and the acute, chronic or potentially fatal circumstances that can occur."

Many students, the article said, "learned about concussion from their parents, at school or online, the researchers found. But, 25 percent of the athletes said they had no education about concussion at all, according to the study."

Read the full story. 

Article by Kassondra Granata, Education World Contributor

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