Teleconcussion Screening Passes The Test

May 25, 2017 By InTouch Health

From youth sports to the pros, there are millions of sports concussions each year. The Brain Injury Research Institute reports that football accounts for more than half of all concussions, but the numbers are rising steadily in hockey, soccer, and other sports.

Pacing the sidelines at every NFL game you’ll find what the league calls an “unaffiliated neurotrama consultant” – a fancy term for an independent neurologist who’s there to assess concussions and remove players from the game if necessary. You’ll seldom, if ever, find a sideline neurologist at the thousands of youth and high school sporting events – but now telehealth is making rapid concussion screening possible.

In a recent study published in the journal of the American Academy of Neurology, eleven collegiate football players with suspected concussions were evaluated both on the sideline and remotely. The teleconcussion and on-site evaluations were in agreement 100% of the time. Making the right remove-from-play decision is crucial because a player risks even greater brain injury if allowed to return to a contest with a concussion.

Thanks to high-resolution video, a teleconcussion specialist can carefully check a player’s eyes for telltale signs of a concussion, like dilated pupils and nystagmus (rapid, involuntary eye movement).

With teleconcussion monitoring, parents at a small-town soccer or football game have the reassurance that their child is being seen by a highly trained neurologist like Dr. Arthur Day, who was on the sidelines at last year’s Super Bowl in Houston. Making the right call about a concussion is too important to entrust to a well-meaning coach or bystander.