Sunday, June 13, 2010
Terminology of Concussion Diagnoses
Researchers at McMaster University heard so many parents say the words "My Child Doesn't Have a Brain Injury, he just has a concussion," that they made it the title of a study they recently conducted. Found in the February, 2010 edition of the journal Pediatrics, the study revealed that children whose parents were told their son/daughter suffered a "concussion" spent less time in the hospital than those whose son/daughter were said to have suffered a "brain injury." The same children who suffered a concussion also went back to school sooner than those children who were diagnosed with traumatic brain injury (TBI).
Carol DeMatteo, the study's lead author and an occupational therapist at McMaster had the following to say: "Why don't we call it a brain injury? After all, that's what it is. We're finding that the term concussion is taken pretty lightly. Maybe we need to call it something different to make them take it seriously."
With the recent increase in focus in pro sports with concussions, I think the long-term terminology used may alter. As the study's author stated- and I agree- we may need to change how we label the injury to raise awareness and potentially increase/improve recovery time.