American Medical Society for Sports Medicine
For Immediate Release Dec 28, 2004

Mild traumatic brain injuries, or concussions, are common in sport. Though these injuries have been known and evaluated for years, the recent years have brought with them tremendous research and a better understanding of the natural history of these injuries in sport. Dr. Putukian presented information regarding current return to play parameters at the Advanced Team Physician Course this month in Miami Beach, Florida. Neuropsychological (NP) testing is a tool for evaluating the presence and persistence of deficits in cognitive function after concussion. It has become commonplace, and newer computerized versions are now widespread. These computer-based versions have attempted to improve the ease and affordability of these tests. Though these tools are exciting, the applicability of their use in making a diagnosis or return to play (RTP) decision is not without controversy. Newer research has demonstrated that the clinical tools of the presence of retrograde amnesia (RGA) correlates with the severity of injury. RGA, along with post-traumatic amnesia (PTA), and, the presence and persistence of symptoms may be important clinical markers that should be assessed and followed. They are helpful in assessment of severity as well as RTP decisions. It is essential that the sports medicine team use their clinical tools for evaluating and managing concussion, in conjunction with the more objective and sophisticated tools that NP testing provides.

Dr. Margot Putukian is a sports medicine physician and President of the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine.

The American Medical Society for Sports Medicine (AMSSM) was organized in 1991by physicians who recognized the need for an organization within the field of sports medicine that approached athletes, exercising individuals, and teams comprehensively with consultative and continuous care of their orthopedic, medical, nutritional, and psychosocial issues. Although sports medicine concepts are often thought of in conjunction with professional and elite athletes, these concepts apply to athletes of all levels including grade school, high school, college and recreational athletes. AMSSM is comprised of over 800 Sports Medicine Physicians whose goal is to provide a link between the rapidly expanding core of knowledge related to sports medicine and its application to patients in a clinical setting.

NOTE: For more information, please contact the AMSSM, 11639 Earnshaw, Overland Park, KS 66210, (913) 327-1415 or [email protected] .

NOTE: For more information, please contact the AMSSM, 4000 W. 114th St., Suite 100, Leawood, KS 66211, (913) 327-1415.

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4000 W. 114th Street, Suite 100
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Phone: 913.327.1415

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