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Concussion Return to Play Guidelines: Longer Recovery Time Needed, Says Doctor

If it was up to Dr. Lester Mayers, young athletes who suffer sports concussions would be not be allowed to return to play (RTP) for 4 to 6 weeks after injury, a significant departure from current concussion guidelines which allow RTP 1 to 2 weeks after an athlete's concussion signs and symptoms clear, both at rest and during exercise.

Soccer Shin Guards: Safety Seal Will Be Required

A year after requiring soccer shinguards to meet National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment (NOCSAE) standards, the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) Soccer Rules Committee will now require the front of the shinguard to be permanently marked with the NOCSAE seal and height range, effective in fall 2012.

MRSA: Risk Factors For Athletes

While skin infections, including MRSA, are reported most often in sports with frequent physical contact, skin contact or activities that may lead to the spread of MRSA skin infections may take place before or after participation in a sport with little physical contact.  Therefore, anyone participating in organized or recreational sports should be aware of the signs of possible skin infections and follow prevention measures.

Concussion Defined

A concussion Is defined as trauma (e.g. usually but not always a blow to the head, face or neck) which causes the brain  to collide with the skull. A "concussion" is derived from the Latin concutere, meaning to shake violently. It is also often referred to as an MTBI (mild traumatic brain injury).

Every Concussion Is Different, Says Dr. Robert Cantu

While concussions share certain characteristics, every concussion is unique to that particular individual, says Dr. Robert Cantu, and requires individualized management.

Parents and Athletes Need To Know Post-Concussion Signs and Symptoms, Says Dr. Robert Cantu

Dr. Robert Cantu says it is extremely important that parents and athletes recognize the signs and symptoms of a concussion.  Not only do athletes need to self-report symptoms, says Dr. Cantu, but they should let the coaching and medical staff know if a teammate is experiencing symptoms.  It just might save his life.

No Return To Play In Same Game After Suffering Concussion For Youth Athletes, Says Dr. Robert Cantu

Because of the risk to youth and high school athletes of suffering a second potentially fatal brain injury before the brain has healed from the initial injury - a condition called second impact syndrome - Dr. Cantu advises against allowing such athletes to return to play in the same game or practice after experiencing post-concussion signs or symptoms.

Second Impact Syndrome, Though Rare, Poses Catastrophic Risk To Concussed High School Athletes

Second-impact syndrome occurs when a high school athlete who sustains a head injury - often a concussion or worse injury, such as a cerebral contusion (bruised brain) - sustains a second head injury before symptoms associated with the first injury have cleared. The condition, while rare, causes a sharp increase in intracranial pressure that is almost always fatal, says Dr. Robert Cantu.

"Stepwise" Return to Play Recommended For Athletes Sidelined By Concussion For Several Weeks Or Longer

If an athlete has been sidelined by a concussion for several weeks or longer, Dr. Robert Cantu recommends that he follow a "stepwise" approach to return to play.

Advice for Parents When Child's Concussion Symptoms Persist Or Get Worse

Dr. Robert Cantu recommends parents seek additional testing and evaluation if their child's post-concussion signs and symptoms do not clear within a week to 10 days or increase in number or severity.
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