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Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes
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Head and Neck Injuries in Football Athletes

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  • 1. Head and Neck Injuries in Football Players Joel Gonzales, M. D.
  • 2. Today’s Topics • Concussions • Burner Syndrome • Transient Quadriparesis • Permanent Spinal Cord Injuries
  • 3. Concussions • Player’s initial state of condition does NOT reliably indicate severity of injury
  • 4. Concussions • Evaluate: – Facial expression – Orientation to time, person, place – Amnesia? – Gait
  • 5. Grade 1 Concussion • Player dazed / confused • May have unsteady gait • Mildest form • No loss of consciousness
  • 6. Grade 1 Concussion • No Amnesia • Symptoms last only 10-15 minutes – Player lucid – Gait steady – Eyes clear
  • 7. Grade 1 Concussion • TREATMENT: allow return to play under close supervision • No return to play if dizzy, have headache, or overly emotional
  • 8. Grade 2 Concussions • Same symptoms as Grade 1 • Post-traumatic amnesia (cannot recall events since injury)
  • 9. Grade 2 Concussions • NO RETURN to play on day of injury • Must see neurosurgeon • No return to play until headache, irritability, and inability to concentrate resolve
  • 10. Grade 3 Concussion • Have Retrograde Amnesia (cannot recall events PRIOR to injury) • No return to play • Need hospital observation
  • 11. Grade 4 Concussion • Loss of consciousness for seconds to minutes • Emerge confused • Have post-traumatic and retrograde amnesia
  • 12. Grade 4 Concussion • Place player on stretcher • Protect cervical spine • Hospital for observation • Never allow player with l.o.c. to return to play that day
  • 13. Grade 5 Concussion • Loss of consciousness • Cardiorespiratory arrest • CPR and transport to hospital immediately
  • 14. Summary on Concussions • Grade 1 - No amnesia - return to play • Grade 2 - Post-injury amnesia - see neurosurgeon • Grade 3 - Retrograde amnesia - hospital • Grade 4,5 - loss of consciousness - hospital
  • 15. Burner Syndrome • Common injury - 50% of NCAA players over 4 yr career • Player makes contact with head and shoulder while tackling • Intense burning pain about shoulder
  • 16. Burner Syndrome • Complain of burning numbness • Pain may radiate into arm or hand • “Dead arm” or numbness / tingling • Recovery time = usually minutes
  • 17. Burner Syndrome • 5-10% of injuries more serious • Neurologic deficit may last several hours • Weakness in deltoids / biceps
  • 18. Burner Syndrome • Athletes may return to play only if: – complete recovery of biceps / deltoid strength – complete resolution of symptoms • Watch player closely • Equip with more cushioned pads / custom rubber neck roll
  • 19. Burner Syndrome • Some players more susceptible to repeat injury • Equip with more cushioned pads and custom rubber neck roll • Neck strengthening regimen
  • 20. Transient Quadriparesis • Numbness and weakness from neck down • Persistent numbness or weakness in arms, legs, trunk • Need immediate spine x-rays / MRI
  • 21. Transient Quadriparesis • No return to play • Referral to neurosurgeon • Must rule out cervical fracture or disc problem
  • 22. Permanent Spinal Cord Injuries • 99 permanent spinal cord injuries in H.S. and college football 1971-1975 • 1976 - “NO SPEARING RULE” • 1977-1987 = 105 permanent cord inj. • 50% reduction rate after rule started
  • 23. Permanent Spinal Cord Injuries • 86 H.S. player / 14college / 5 semi-pro • Most occur during games • Defensive backs most vulnerable
  • 24. Prevention of Spinal Cord Injury • Teach proper tackling (no spearing) • Proper conditioning / neck strengthening • Enforce “no spearing” rule during practice
  • 25. Prevention of Spinal Cord Injury • Make certain equipment fits properly • Physician should be at all games

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