Continued play after concussion lengthens recovery time

November 1, 2016

Athletes who continued to play after experiencing a concussion were 8.8 times more likely to take a long time to recover (≥21 days) than athletes who immediately left the field.

Continued play after a concussion lengthens recovery time. Athletes who continued to play after experiencing a concussion were 8.8 times more likely to take a long time to recover (≥21 days) than athletes who immediately left the field, a study in 95 athletes aged 12 to 19 years showed. Compared with athletes who immediately left play after a concussion, those who continued to play exhibited significantly worse neurocognitive performance and more symptoms at 1 to 7 days and 8 to 30 days after injury. Overall, athletes who continued to play with a concussion took almost twice as long to recover as those who were immediately removed from play (Elbin RJ, et al. Pediatrics. 2016;138[3]:e20160910). 

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Ms Freedman is a freelance medical editor and writer in New Jersey. She has nothing to disclose in regard to affiliations with or financial interests in any organizations that may have an interest in any part of this article.