According to the CDC, 15% of high school students experienced 1 or more concussions and 6% experienced 2 or more. This is higher compared to estimates collected by emergency departments and athletic trainers. Emergency department data miss concussions treated elsewhere, athletic trainer reports miss concussions sustained outside of school-based sports, and both sources miss medically untreated concussions.
The CDC received a great amount of information from the reports on the national Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS). Here’s the run down of the interesting information-
– 9.1% of high school students reported 1 concussion, 3.0% reported 2, 1.0% reported 3, and 2.0% reported 4 or more concussions
– Males were more likely to report 1,2, and 4 or more concussions than female students
– Black and Hispanic students were more likely to report 4 or more concussions than were white students
– students who played on 1, 2, and 3 or more sports teams, the prevalence of reporting having had at least 1 concussion was 16.7%, 22.9%, and 30.3%, respectively
The bottom line- concussions among high school students may not be accurately captured by ED’s or AT’s. More needs to be done to educate students, parents, coaches, and school personnel to recognize and report the injury.