McLeod Sports Medicine provides cognitive testing for concussion patients
Management of sport-related concussions has been an ever changing process. However, recently there has been a significant amount of research into sports-related concussions in high school athletes and when it is safe to return athletes back to sport following a concussion. McLeod Sports Medicine, in an attempt to keep athletes’ health and safety in mind uses a concussion assessment tool to aid in the evaluation and management of possible brain injuries.
ImPACT (Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing) is a research-based software tool used to evaluate recovery after concussion. It was developed at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and is used at all levels of sport, including high schools, NCAA, MLB, NBA, NHL and NFL. ImPACT evaluates multiple aspects of brain function, including memory, attention, processing speed, reaction time, and post-concussion symptoms. This program provides athletic trainers and physicians an objective tool to use in managing concussions.
Dr. Pat Denton, who is Medical Director of McLeod Sports Medicine, and Dr. Chadley Runyan, both of Pee Dee Orthopaedic Associates, are trained in ImPACT. McLeod Sports Medicine also aims to provide a safe return to activity for all athletes after injury, particularly after a concussion. In order to manage these injuries the best way possible, McLeod Sports Medicine implements this program in the high schools staffed with a McLeod Certified Athletic Trainer. This tool is offered as a service to athletes who may be involved in contact or collision sports. The athletes have a baseline test performed prior to the start of their season.
In the event of a possible concussion, the initial post-concussion test is administered within three days post injury, when possible. Repeat post-concussion tests are administered by McLeod staff at appropriate intervals, based on the athlete’s current symptoms. The repeat tests will be compared to the baseline test to help determine when it is safe for an athlete to return to athletics. The ImPACT concussion testing is an essential component in safe concussion management, and was initially funded for high schools in this area by a grant through the McLeod Foundation.