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Utilisation of an electronic incident report to document injury-related demographics and medical triage in youth, high school and college athletes
  1. Jay L Alberts1,2,3,
  2. Susan M Linder1,2,
  3. Andrew Russman2,3,4,
  4. Rick Figler2,4,
  5. Jason Cruickshank2,4,
  6. Bob Grey2,4,
  7. Maureen Lally2,
  8. Tanujit Day1,5
  1. 1Cleveland Clinic Department of Biomedical Engineering, Cleveland, Ohio
  2. 2Cleveland Clinic Concussion Centre, Ohio
  3. 3Cleveland Clinic Department of Neurology, Cleveland Clinic Department of Neurology, Cleveland, Ohio
  4. 4Cleveland Clinic Sports Health, Cleveland, Ohio
  5. 5Cleveland Clinic Department of Quantitative Health Sciences, Cleveland, Ohio

Abstract

Objective To develop and utilise a custom mobile application to provide a portable yet systematic method to characterise injury demographics, post-injury disposition, and immediate medical care of sport-related concussion in youth, high school and college settings.

Design Retrospective observational study.

Setting Academic medical centre.

Participants Athletes under the care of Cleveland Clinic Concussion Centre clinicians from August 5, 2014-March 1, 2016. The sample included youth (n=110), high school (n=1175) and college (n=309) athletes; approximately 35% of the sample were female.

Intervention Electronic incident reports were completed on all student-athletes with suspected concussion to triage injury severity, document injury-related demographics along with immediate medical management. Total time to complete the incident report was less than three minutes.

Outcome measures Sport, mechanism of injury, red flags, immediate symptoms, and post-injury disposition were recorded for all participants.

Main results Football and soccer represented the greatest frequency of injury across males and females respectively. Despite significantly fewer red flags in youth, they were

sent to the emergency department four times more frequently (22%) than high school or college athletes (5%).

Conclusions The systematic characterisation of injury profiles indicates athletes across the continuum of age share general characteristics in terms of incidence as a function of sport and setting (practice vs. competition). The disproportional disposition to emergency departments, despite the absence of red flags, indicates a more conservative approach to youth concussion triage compared to high school and college athletes.

Competing interests None.

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