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Summary and agreement statement of the first International Conference on Concussion in Sport, Vienna 2001
  1. M Aubry, Chief Medical Officer1,
  2. R Cantu, Chief, Neurosurgery Service and Director, Sports Medicine Service2,
  3. J Dvorak, Chairman3,
  4. T Graf-Baumann4,
  5. K Johnston, Chair5,
  6. J Kelly, Associate Professor of Clinical Neurology6,
  7. M Lovell, Director7,
  8. P McCrory8,
  9. W Meeuwisse9,
  10. P Schamasch, Director10,11
  1. 1International Ice Hockey Federation
  2. 2Emerson Hospital, Concord, MA, USA. Medical Director, National Center for Catastrophic Sports Injury Research, Chapel Hill, NC, USA
  3. 3FIFA Medical Research and Assessment Center (F-MARC), Wilhelm Neurologist and Director of Schulthess Clinic, Zurich, Switzerland
  4. 4FIFA Medical Research and Assessment Center (F-Marc), Tenningen, Germany
  5. 5Concussion in Sport Group, FIFA, IIHF, IOC; Neurosurgeon and Director of Neurotrauma, McGill University Health Centre (MUHC), McGill University and McGill Sport Medicine Centre, Montreal, Canada
  6. 6Northwestern University Medical School, Chicago Neurological Institute, Chicago, IL, USA
  7. 7Sports Medicine Concussion Program, University of Pittsburgh. Co-director, National Hockey League Neuropsychology Program, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
  8. 8Brain Research Institute and Center for Sports Medicine Research and Education, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia
  9. 9University of Calgary Sport Medicine Center, Sport Injury Consultant, National Hockey League, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
  10. 10International Olympic Committee Medical Commission, Lausanne, Switzerland
  11. 11the Concussion in Sport (CIS) Group
  1. Correspondence to:
    Dr Johnston, Division of Neurosurgery, Montreal General Hospital, 1650 Cedar Ave, Room L7-524, Montreal, Quebec, Canada H3G 1A4

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Recommendations for the improvement of safety and health of athletes who may suffer concussive injuries

In November 2001, the first International Symposium on Concussion in Sport was held in Vienna, Austria. This symposium was organised by the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF), the Federation Internationale de Football Association Medical Assessment and Research Centre (FIFA, F-MARC), and the International Olympic Committee Medical Commission (IOC).

The aim of the symposium was to provide recommendations for the improvement of safety and health of athletes who suffer concussive injuries in ice hockey, football (soccer), and other sports. To this end a range of experts were invited to address specific issues of epidemiology, basic and clinical science, grading systems, cognitive assessment, new research methods, protective equipment, management, prevention, and long term outcome, and to discuss a unitary model for understanding concussive injury. At the conclusion of the conference, a small group of experts were given a mandate by the conference delegates and organising bodies to draft a document describing the agreement position reached by those in attendance at that meeting. For the purpose of this paper, this group will be called the Concussion in Sport Group (CISG).


This review seeks to summarise the findings of the Vienna conference and to provide a working document that will be widely applicable to sport related concussion. This document is developed for use by doctors, therapists, health professionals, coaches, and other people involved in the care of injured athletes, whether at the recreational, elite, or professional level.

During the course of the symposium, a persuasive argument was made that a comprehensive systematic approach to concussion would be of potential benefit to aid the injured athlete and direct management decisions.1 This protocol represents a work in progress, and, as with all other guidelines or proposals, it must undergo revision …

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  • * This statement is being published simultaneously with the Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine and the Physician and Sportsmedicine.