Sports Concussion

At Swedish, our team of sports medicine physicians, physiatrists, physical therapists, and a neuropsychologist deliver individual care for athletes. We provide physical evaluation, assessment of concussion severity, neuropsychological evaluation, ongoing monitoring and education for athletes, parents, coaches and school staff. We use clinical guidelines to implement the most appropriate treatment for return-to-play and return-to-school.

What Is a Concussion?

A concussion is a mild traumatic brain injury (TBI) caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head or body that can change the way your brain normally works. After a concussion, some people lose consciousness for a short time; however, most concussions do not result in a loss of consciousness.

If you suspect that the athlete has a concussion, you should take the following steps:

  • Remove the athlete from play.
  • Parents, coaches and school nurse should all be informed about the possible concussion.
  • Keep the athlete out of play until a health care professional, experienced in evaluating for concussion, provides written clearance that the athlete may return to play.

Concussion symptoms

If you have any of the following symptoms, immediately seek care at the emergency department: headaches that worsen, weakness, numbness, or decreased coordination, repeated vomiting or nausea, slurred speech, one pupil larger than the other, convulsions or seizures, increasing confusion or agitation, unusual behavior change, cannot recognize people or places, neck pain, or loss of consciousness (blackout).