New Concussion Tests to Help School Athletes

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ROCKFORD (WIFR) – A new concussion screening could save our kids’ lives.

Football has been at the forefront of concussion talk and with high school training camps beginning on Monday, parents can feel better that schools will be more prepared to handle their athletes’ well-being.

After a year of strict testing, the Mayo Clinic is introducing a new sideline concussion test called King-Devick. It can be completed in just minutes using a pattern of numbers that becomes impossible to follow when the brain suffers a trauma. Doctors say this is important because a person does not have to lose consciousness to sustain a concussion.

Current regulations on concussions say that an athlete must be symptom-free in order to return to the playing field, however Dr. Royce says the brain can take up to two months to full heal after suffering one. He believes athletes should be required to sit out a minimum of one month before being cleared for activity.

"The athlete may have sustained a concussion without actually hitting his or her head. There may be an indirect blow to the body rattling the brain around within the cranium which could cause the concussion," said Dr. Jeffrey Royce.

Dr. Royce will be holding a free hour-long concussion presentation at SwedishAmerican on Wednesday beginning at 5:30.

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