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CDC Tackles Youth Concussions With First Ever Guidelines

Author: Rosemary Buckle, M.D.

Considering that more than 800,000 children a year seek care for TBI (traumatic brain injury) – which includes concussion – you would think that there would be a set of standardized care recommendations, right? Surprisingly, healthcare providers have not had access to evidence-based guidelines for pediatric mTBI (mild traumatic brain injury – e.g. “concussion”) until September 4 of this year, when The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released new clinical recommendations.

The new guidelines aim to help healthcare providers improve the health of their patients through 19 sets of clinical recommendations. Everything from diagnosis and prognosis to management and treatment is covered in the new mTBI guidelines, which were developed after “an extensive review of scientific literature, spanning 25 years of research.”

5 Key Practice-Changing Recommendations

According to a CDC media release, the guideline includes these “five key practice-changing recommendations…”

    1. Do not routinely image patients to diagnose mTBI.
    2. Use validated, age-appropriate symptom scales to diagnose mTBI.
    3. Assess evidence-based risk factors for prolonged recovery.
    4. Provide patients with instructions on return to activity customized to their symptoms.
    5. Counsel patients to return gradually to non-sports activities after no more than 2-3 days of rest.

Concussion Resources for Parents

If your child has been diagnosed with a concussion, view these CDC resources:

Additionally, you can find many concussion-related resources on the Houston Institute for Sports Medicine & Orthopedics Blog:

Concussion Care? See Dr. Rosemary Buckle

For more information about concussion care in Houston, schedule an appointment with Dr. Rosemary Buckle at Houston Institute for Sports Medicine & Orthopedics by calling (713) 756-5546. Concussions deserve to be taken seriously. Repeat injuries – especially if the initial injury has not healed – can be very dangerous. Whether a concussion occurs in a child or adult, rest is important for recovery! Don’t hesitate to see an urgent care provider for an immediate evaluation.

Please consult with your physician before undertaking any form of medical treatment or adopting any exercise program or dietary guidelines.