Arizona doc creating brain-injury registry for high-school athletes

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By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland

PHOENIX -- It's been a hot-button topic in the medical community, the high-school sports community and parent of young athletes -- concussion and its long-term effects, particularly on still-developing brains.

In partnership with Arizona's world-renowned Barrow Neurological Institute, Dr. Tamara McLeod, an expert on pediatric head injuries and a professor at A.T. Still University, is pilot-testing a brain-injury registry for high school students that will be rolled out across the state.

McLeod provides baseline and post-concussion testing for a network of Arizona high schools and has created a concussion database that, to date, contains details on head injuries sustained by almost 400 student athletes in Arizona.

She sat down with 3TV's Javier Soto to discuss the problems posed by concussion injuries and what she hopes to accomplish with her registry.

Concussion Statistics

  • 1.6 - 3 million sports-related concussions annually.
  • 100,000 concussions caused by high school sports each year.
  • In Arizona, 7,000 high school athletes suffer concussions every year.

Top-5 Concussion Myths

  • If you're not passed out, you're not concussed.
  • Every high school coach knows how to spot a concussion.
  • Concussions can be easily diagnosed using imaging.
  • If a player is cleared to play, he is out of the woods.
  • Concussed players who've been suspended from play are OK to return to the classroom. 

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