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40,000 Arizona student athletes receive concussion tests from Mayo Clinic
Date:6/28/2012

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. More than 40,000 student athletes in Arizona have taken advantage of computerized baseline concussion evaluations offered by Mayo Clinic in the program's first year. That amounts to nearly 40 percent of the state's roughly 100,000 high school athletes. Baseline concussion evaluations measure how the brain is working before injury, and are mandatory tests for professional and college athletes.

Mayo covers the cost of the cognitive evaluations for all high school and junior high school-aged interscholastic and club athletes in the state. The program was made possible through the support of benefactors and Mayo Clinic.

The test takes 8󈝻 minutes to complete, and athletes or their parents can share the results with health care providers of their choice. After a concussion, the test can be repeated to determine if there has been a change in the cognitive capabilities of the athlete and, once symptoms have resolved, the test can be repeated to determine whether the athlete has returned to pre-injury baseline. The results of this test, combined with a thorough neurological evaluation, ensure that the health care provider can make an informed and objective determination on when and whether the athlete can safely resume normal activities and in the case of student athletes, when they can return to their sport.

"The diagnosis of concussion, assessment of its severity and knowing when an athlete can return to physical activity, competition, work or school is not always clear," says Mayo neurologist David Dodick, M.D., at Mayo Clinic in Arizona and president of the American Headache Society. "Having a baseline concussion assessment for each athlete will assist in a physician's ability to identify and quantify a change in brain function, and determine if and when the athlete has returned to his or her baseline."

After a concussion, if an athlete continues to play or returns to play too early, there is a significant risk of
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Contact: Jim McVeigh
mcveigh.jim@mayo.du
480-301-4222
Mayo Clinic
Source:Eurekalert

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