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New investigation or diagnostic strategies
Psychophysiological and neuromotor indicators of brain concussion
  1. Éric Le Bouthillier*,
  2. Michel Caouette,
  3. Fanny Guérin
  1. Neuropsychologist, 2-6389 de Bordeaux; Montreal, Quebec, Canada H2G2R9


    Objective Post-concussion symptoms disappear from days up to 3 months in adults after a 1st concussion. 15% of adults have persistent sequelae. The athletes have a higher probability of experiencing a second concussion and to suffer from both prolonged due to the cumulative effect of these neurological injuries. Lower cognitive and physical skills of the athlete are more documented after concussion. Specifically, the impacts of concussion on neuromotor and neurophysiological functions are investigated.

    Design Case studies.

    Settings Rehabilitation in public and private practices.

    Patients Three athletes who sustained a concussion with persistent symptoms after several months to one year.

    Interventions Measures of frequency and heart rate variability at night; percentage of cardiac reserve on daily tasks of different intensities and a neuromotor assessment were performed.

    Main Outcome All three athletes show a cardiac reactivity to a task in mismatch with the actual engineering costs of the various tasks performed and, several months to one year post-concussion. They show motor strategies disorders and slower processing of visual information.

    Conclusions Cardiac monitoring and neuromotor assessment provides additional indicators in the detection of concussion, as a complement to the neurocognitive assessment, and should be included routinely in the management concussion protocols of athletes. These data are also valuable clinically to help reduce post-concussion symptoms. However research is needed to understand their impact on the recovery of the athlete so as to promote a safe return to play.

    Competing interests Neurosport is a private pratice who offers services to athlete for post-concussion assessment and neurorehabilitation.

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