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Cerebrovascular reactivity assessed by transcranial Doppler ultrasound in sport-related concussion: a systematic review
  1. Andrew J Gardner1,
  2. Can Ozan Tan2,3,
  3. Philip N Ainslie4,5,
  4. Paul van Donkelaar6,
  5. Peter Stanwell7,
  6. Christopher R Levi8,
  7. Grant L Iverson9
  1. 1Centre for Translational Neuroscience and Mental Health, School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, New South Wales, Australia
  2. 2Cardiovascular Research Laboratory, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
  3. 3Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
  4. 4Faculty of Health and Social Development, School of Health and Exercise Sciences, Centre for Heart, Lung, and Vascular Health, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  5. 5University of British Columbia—Okanagan Campus, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  6. 6Faculty of Health and Social Development, School of Health and Exercise Sciences, University of British Columbia—Okanagan Campus, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  7. 7Faculty of Health, Centre for Translation Neuroscience and Mental Health, School of Health Sciences, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, New South Wales, Australia
  8. 8Centre for Translational Neuroscience and Mental Health, School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Newcastle, Callaghan, New South Wales, Australia
  9. 9Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Harvard Medical School; Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, MassGeneral Hospital for Children Sports Concussion Program, & Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital Home Base Program, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Andrew J Gardner, Centre for Translational Neuroscience and Mental Health, University of Newcastle, Level 5, McAuley Building, Calvary Mater Hospital, Waratah, NSW 2298, Australia; andrew.gardner{at}neurogard.com.au

Abstract

Background Traumatic brain injury influences regulation of cerebral blood flow in animal models and in human studies. We reviewed the use of transcranial Doppler ultrasound (US) to monitor cerebrovascular reactivity following sport-related concussion.

Review method A narrative and systematic review of articles published in the English language, from December 1982 to October 2013.

Data sources Articles were retrieved via numerous databases using relevant key terms. Observational, cohort, correlational, cross-sectional and longitudinal studies were included.

Results Three publications met the criteria for inclusion; these provided data from 42 athletes and 33 controls. All three studies reported reductions in cerebrovascular reactivity via transcranial Doppler US.

Conclusions These initial results support the use of cerebrovascular reactivity as a research tool for identifying altered neurophysiology and monitoring recovery in adult athletes. Larger cross-sectional, prospective and longitudinal studies are required to understand the sensitivity and prognostic value of cerebrovascular reactivity in sport-related concussion.

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