Knowing When To Get Back in the Game
Baseline Test Helps Trainers Manage Concussions
WACO, Texas – (March 28, 2012) Southwest Sports Medicine at Hillcrest is the first program in Waco to provide a baseline brain function test used to better manage concussions.
The ImPACT (Immediate Post-concussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing) assessment measures brain processing, speed, memory and visual motor skills. The test tells doctors what the athletes cannot - or sometimes will not - after they have suffered a concussion.
"Young athletes can't always tell you the whole truth due to concussion symptoms," Jody Moore, high school coordinator for Southwest Sports Medicine and Orthopaedics, said about concussed players. "They simply want to get back to playing. ImPACT is an objective way of saying, 'you’re still concussed, and you cannot play yet.'”
With ImPACT, the athlete takes a pre-season 20-minute test with the data stored in a computer file. If the athlete ever experiences a concussion, he will take the ImPACT test several times in the days following the head trauma. Post-concussion statistics are then compared to baseline data to help determine the severity and effects of the injury. When the athlete's cognitive function has returned to baseline scores, it’s safe for the athlete to return to sports.
"The nature of concussions is unpredictable so our goal is to prevent reoccurring concussions and that’s where ImPACT's data can help us,” said Corbett Boone, M.D., a sports medicine specialist and team physician for Baylor University Athletics.
Previously available only to collegiate or professional team athletes, Southwest Sports Medicine has made ImPACT testing available to both local high school athletic programs and parents who want to screen their youth athletes.
“You can have long-term damage if you don't properly diagnose and treat a concussion the first time; what we don’t want to have is a concussion on top of a concussion,” said Dr. Boone.
Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center operates with a mission to personally provide quality, compassionate health care in a Christian environment. Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center is jointly operated by Hillcrest Health System and Scott & White Healthcare. The System includes Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center (HBMC), a fully accredited 237-bed acute care hospital on Interstate 35, HBMC - Herring Avenue, a post-acute care campus comprised of 73 inpatient beds including the Scott & White Center for Rehabilitative Medicine and Hillcrest Family Health Center, a network of primary care clinics located in Bellmead, China Spring, Hewitt, Woodway and Waco. HMBC is home to Waco's only Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and is the area's designated Trauma Center. Hillcrest is also the Official Healthcare Provider for Baylor University Athletics.
Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center
100 Hillcrest Medical Blvd
Waco, Texas 76712