Physical activity and concussion risk in youth ice hockey players: pooled prospective injury surveillance cohorts from Canada.
ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVE:To examine the association between meeting physical activity (PA) volume recommendations and concussion rates in male ice hockey players aged 11-17 years. DESIGN:Pooled prospective injury surveillance cohort data from the 2011-2012, 2013-2014 and 2014-2015 youth ice hockey seasons. PARTICIPANTS:Male Alberta-based Pee Wee (aged 11-12?years), Bantam (aged 13-14?years) and Midget (aged 15-17?years) ice hockey players participating in any of the three cohorts were eligible (n=1726). A total of 1208 players were included after the exclusion criteria were applied (ie, players with new/unhealed injuries within 6?weeks of study entry, missing 6-week PA history questionnaires, missing game and/or practice participation exposure hours, players who sustained concussions when no participation exposure hours were collected). OUTCOME MEASURES:Dependent variable: medically diagnosed concussion. Independent variable: whether or not players' self-reported history of PA (ie, hours of physical education and extracurricular sport participation) met the Canadian Society of Exercise Physiology and Public Health Agency of Canada recommendation of one hour daily during the 6?weeks prior to study entry (ie, 42?hours or more). RESULTS:The PA volume recommendations were met by 65.05% of players who subsequently sustained concussions, and 75.34% of players who did not sustain concussions. The concussion incidence rate ratios (IRR) reflect higher concussion rates in players who did not meet the PA volume recommendations vs. players who met the PA volume recommendations among Pee Wee players (IRR 2.94 95% CI 1.30 to 6.64), Bantam players (IRR 2.18, 95% CI 1.21 to 3.93) and non-elite players aged 11-14 years (IRR 2.45, 95% CI 1.33 to 4.51). CONCLUSION AND RELEVANCE:The concussion rate of players who did not meet the Canadian PA volume recommendations was more than twice the concussion rate of players who met recommendations among male Pee Wee players, Bantam players and non-elite level players. Further exploration of the impact of public health PA recommendations in a sport injury prevention context is warranted.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Although high rates of injury occur in youth ice hockey, disagreements exist about the risks and benefits of permitting bodychecking. We sought to evaluate associations between experience with bodychecking and rates of injury and concussion among ice hockey players aged 15-17 years.<h4>Methods</h4>We obtained data from a prospective cohort study of ice hockey players aged 15-17 years in Alberta who played in leagues that permitted bodychecking. We collected data over 3 seasons of play (2015/16-2017/18). We compared players based on experience with bodychecking (≤ 2 v. ≥ 3 yr), estimated using local and national bodychecking policy and region of play. We used validated methodology of ice hockey injury surveillance to identify all injuries related to ice hockey games and defined concussions according to the Consensus Statement on Concussion in Sport.<h4>Results</h4>We included 941 players who contributed to 1168 player-seasons, with 205 players participating in more than 1 season. Compared with players with 2 years or less of bodychecking experience, those with 3 or more years of experience had higher rates of all injury (adjusted incidence rate ratio [IRR] 2.55, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.57-4.14), injury with more than 7 days of time loss (adjusted IRR 2.65, 95% CI 1.50-4.68) and concussion (adjusted IRR 2.69, 95% CI 1.34-5.42).<h4>Interpretation</h4>Among ice hockey players aged 15-17 years who participated in leagues permitting bodychecking, more experience with bodychecking did not protect against injury. This provides further support for removing bodychecking from youth ice hockey.
Project description:OBJECTIVES:To examine the association between self-reported exposure to concussion education and knowledge, beliefs and self-reported behaviour among parents and coaches of youth ice hockey players. DESIGN:Cross-sectional. SETTING:Community ice hockey teams from Calgary and Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. PARTICIPANTS:Parents and coaches of ice hockey players (ages 11-17, all divisions of play). PRIMARY AND SECONDARY OUTCOME MEASURES:Participants completed a questionnaire developed and validated to measure concussion knowledge, beliefs and concussion management behaviour (ie, coaches removing athletes from play; parents taking children with suspected concussions to physicians) consistent with the Health Action Process Approach (HAPA). The questionnaire examined specific HAPA constructs (ie, risk perception, outcome expectancies, action self-efficacy, intention, action planning, maintenance self-efficacy, recovery self-efficacy) relevant to concussion management behaviour. RESULTS:Participants included 786 parents (31.8% with coaching experience) and 10 non-parent coaches. Of the participants, 649 (82.6%) previously received concussion education. Based on a multivariable regression analysis adjusting for coaching experience, previous history of a child sustaining one or more concussions, first aid experience and cluster by team, exposure to concussion education was associated with a mean score difference of 1.36 (95% CI 0.68 to 2.03), p<0.0001, in the knowledge score. Exposure to concussion education was not significantly associated with any of the HAPA constructs based on Wilcoxon rank-sum tests. CONCLUSION:Exposure to concussion education may be associated with small overall differences in concussion knowledge but may not be associated with significant differences in beliefs or intended behaviours related to concussion management among youth hockey parents and coaches.When providing education or recommendations for concussion education sources to coaches and parents, educational strategies grounded in behavioural change theory that specifically target the motivators of behavioural change should be considered.
Project description:<h4>Objective</h4>Since concussion is the most common injury in ice hockey, the objective of the current study was to elucidate risk factors, specific mechanisms, and clinical presentations of concussion in men's and women's ice hockey.<h4>Methods</h4>Ice hockey players from 5 institutions participating in the Concussion Assessment, Research, and Education Consortium were eligible for the current study. Participants who sustained a concussion outside of this sport were excluded. There were 332 (250 males, 82 females) athletes who participated in ice hockey, and 47 (36 males, 11 females) who sustained a concussion.<h4>Results</h4>Previous concussion (odds ratio (OR) = 2.00; 95% confidence interval (95% CI): 1.02‒3.91) was associated with increased incident concussion odds, while wearing a mouthguard was protective against incident concussion (OR = 0.43; 95%CI: 0.22‒0.85). Overall, concussion mechanisms did not significantly differ between sexes. There were specific differences in how concussions presented clinically across male and female ice hockey players, however. Females (9.09%) were less likely than males (41.67%) to have a delayed symptom onset (p = 0.045). Additionally, females took significantly longer to reach asymptomatic (p = 0.015) and return-to-play clearance (p = 0.005). Within the first 2 weeks post-concussion, 86.11% of males reached asymptomatic, while only 45.50% of females reached the same phase of recovery. Most males (91.67%) were cleared for return to play within 3 weeks of their concussion, compared to less than half (45.50%) of females.<h4>Conclusion</h4>The current study proposes possible risk factors, mechanisms, and clinical profiles to be validated in future concussions studies with larger female sample sizes. Understanding specific risk factors, concussion mechanisms, and clinical profiles of concussion in collegiate ice hockey may generate ideas for future concussion prevention or intervention studies.
Project description:In 1997, the National Hockey League (NHL) and NHL Players' Association (NHLPA) launched a concussion program to improve the understanding of this injury. We explored initial postconcussion signs, symptoms, physical examination findings and time loss (i.e., time between the injury and medical clearance by the physician to return to competitive play), experienced by male professional ice-hockey players, and assessed the utility of initial postconcussion clinical manifestations in predicting time loss among hockey players.We conducted a prospective case series of concussions over seven NHL regular seasons (1997-2004) using an inclusive cohort of players. The primary outcome was concussion and the secondary outcome was time loss. NHL team physicians documented post-concussion clinical manifestations and recorded the date when a player was medically cleared to return to play.Team physicians reported 559 concussions during regular season games. The estimated incidence was 1.8 concussions per 1000 player-hours. The most common postconcussion symptom was headache (71%). On average, time loss (in days) increased 2.25 times (95% confidence interval [CI] 1.41-3.62) for every subsequent (i.e., recurrent) concussion sustained during the study period. Controlling for age and position, significant predictors of time loss were postconcussion headache (p < 0.001), low energy or fatigue (p = 0.01), amnesia (p = 0.02) and abnormal neurologic examination (p = 0.01). Using a previously suggested time loss cut-point of 10 days, headache (odds ratio [OR] 2.17, 95% CI 1.33-3.54) and low energy or fatigue (OR 1.72, 95% CI 1.04-2.85) were significant predictors of time loss of more than 10 days.Postconcussion headache, low energy or fatigue, amnesia and abnormal neurologic examination were significant predictors of time loss among professional hockey players.
Project description:There are limited data on the incidence of concussion and concussion symptom nondisclosure among collegiate women's ice hockey athletes.To determine the incidence of sports-related concussion (SRC) in National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) women's ice hockey athletes.Descriptive epidemiology study.An anonymous online survey was completed by 459 NCAA women's ice hockey athletes. Players reported diagnosed concussions as well as incidents where they experienced an impact or blow to the head followed by symptoms associated with a concussion; reports spanned the duration of the 2014-2015 season and throughout players' organized hockey career.About half (n = 219, 47.7%) of respondents reported at least 1 diagnosed concussion over the duration of their entire organized ice hockey career. A total of 13.3% (n = 61) of respondents reported a diagnosed concussion during the 2014-2015 season. The incidence rate was 1.18 (95% CI, 0.92-1.51) per 1000 athlete-exposures to a game or practice and 0.58 (95% CI, 0.45-0.74) per 1000 hours of ice time. One-third (34.2%, n = 157) of players reported at least 1 impact where they experienced concussion-like symptoms during the 2014-2015 season; 82.8% of these players reported that they continued to play after at least 1 of these impacts, and 66.8% of players reported at least 1 impact where they never disclosed any symptoms.There is a high incidence of SRC in collegiate women's ice hockey and a concerning level of symptom nondisclosure. Additional research is needed to understand the causes of concussion and reasons for the lack of symptom disclosure, including factors specific to female athletes and contextual issues specific to women's collegiate ice hockey.
Project description:The brain vital signs framework is a portable, objective, neurophysiological evaluation of brain function at point-of-care. We investigated brain vital signs at pre- and post-season for age 14 or under (Bantam) and age 16-20 (Junior-A) male ice hockey players to (i) further investigate previously published brain vital sign results showing subconcussive cognitive deficits and (ii) validate these findings through comparison with head-impact data obtained from instrumented accelerometers. With a longitudinal study design, 23 male ice hockey players in Bantam (<i>n</i> = 13; age 13.63 ± 0.62) and Tier II Junior-A (<i>n</i> = 10; age 18.62 ± 0.86) divisions were assessed at pre- and post-season. None were diagnosed with a concussion during the season. Cognitive evoked potential measures of Auditory sensation (N100), Basic attention (P300) and Cognitive processing (N400) were analysed as changes in peak amplitudes and latencies (six standard scores total). A regression analysis examined the relationship between brain vital signs and the number of head impacts received during the study season. Significant pre/post differences in brain vital signs were detected for both groups. Bantam and Junior-A players also differed in number of head impacts (Bantam: 32.92 ± 17.68; Junior-A: 195.00 ± 61.08; <i>P</i> < 0.001). Importantly, the regression model demonstrated a significant linear relationship between changes in brain vital signs and total head impacts received (<i>R</i> = 0.799, <i>P</i> = 0.007), with clear differences between the Bantam and Junior-A groups. In the absence of a clinically diagnosed concussion, the brain vital sign changes appear to have demonstrated the compounding effects of repetitive subconcussive impacts. The findings underscored the importance of an objective physiological measure of brain function along the spectrum of concussive impacts.
Project description:<h4>Objective</h4>To determine whether multiparametric MRI data can provide insight into the acute and long-lasting neuronal sequelae after a concussion in adolescent athletes.<h4>Methods</h4>Players were recruited from Bantam hockey leagues in which body checking is first introduced (male, age 11-14 years). Clinical measures, diffusion metrics, resting-state network and region-to-region functional connectivity patterns, and magnetic resonance spectroscopy absolute metabolite concentrations were analyzed from an independent, age-matched control group of hockey players (n = 26) and longitudinally in concussed athletes within 24 to 72 hours (n = 17) and 3 months (n = 14) after a diagnosed concussion.<h4>Results</h4>There were diffusion abnormalities within multiple white matter tracts, functional hyperconnectivity, and decreases in choline 3 months after concussion. Tract-specific spatial statistics revealed a large region along the superior longitudinal fasciculus with the largest decreases in diffusivity measures, which significantly correlated with clinical deficits. This region also spatially intersected with probabilistic tracts connecting cortical regions where we found acute functional connectivity changes. Hyperconnectivity patterns at 3 months after concussion were present only in players with relatively less severe clinical outcomes, higher choline concentrations, and diffusivity indicative of relatively less axonal disruption.<h4>Conclusions</h4>Changes persisted well after players' clinical scores had returned to normal and they had been cleared to return to play. Ongoing white matter maturation may make adolescent athletes particularly vulnerable to brain injury, and they may require extended recovery periods. The consequences of early brain injury for ongoing brain development and risk of more serious conditions such as second impact syndrome or neural degenerative processes need to be elucidated.
Project description:The purpose of the study was to test the utility of unique panel of blood biomarkers as a means to reflect one's recovery process after sport-related neurotrauma. We established a panel of biomarkers that reacted positive with CD81 (extracellular vesicle marker) and various neuron- and glia-specific antigens [e.g., neurofilament light polypeptide (NF-L), tau, synaptosome-associated protein 25 (SNAP25), glial fibrillary acidic protein, and myelin basic protein]. We first evaluated test-retest reliabilities of brain-derived exosome markers, followed by an application of these markers in eight professional ice hockey players to detect cumulative neuronal burden from a single ice hockey season. During the season, two players were diagnosed with concussions by team physician based on an exhibition of symptoms as well as abnormality in balance and ocular motor testing. One player reached symptom-free status 7?days after the concussion, while the other player required 36?days for symptoms to completely resolve. Blood samples and clinical assessments including balance error scoring system and near point of convergence throughout recovery process were obtained. Biomarkers indicative of axonal damage, neuronal inflammation, and glial activation showed excellent test-retest reliabilities (intraclass correlation coefficient: 0.713-0.998, p's?<?0.01). There was a statistically significant increase in the NF-L marker at post-season follow-up compared to pre-season baseline (Z?=?-2.100, P?=?0.036); however the statistical significance did not withstand Bonferroni correction for multiple comparisons. In concussion cases, neuronal and microglia markers notably increased after concussions, with the unique expression patterns being similar to that of concussion recovery process. These longitudinal data coupled with excellent test-retest reliabilities of novel array of blood biomarkers potentially reflect the damage in neural cell structures and metabolic crisis due to concussion. However, future studies with larger sample size and appropriate control groups to evaluate sensitivity and specificity of these markers are needed. This preliminary case report suggests the potential utility of multimodal blood biomarkers for concussion prognosis and recovery assessment.
Project description:Sports-related injuries increase healthcare cost burden, and in some instances have harmful long term physical and psychological implications. There is currently a lack of comprehensive data on temporal injury trends across professional North American sports. The purpose of this study was to compare temporal trends, according to incidence and time-loss injuries, by body part in professional baseball, basketball, football, and ice hockey. Public injury data from Major League Baseball, National Basketball Association, National Football League, and National Hockey League from 2007 to December 2019 were extracted and used. A mean of 62.49 injuries per 100 players per season was recorded for all professional sports. The groin/hip/thigh reported the greatest season proportional injury incidence for baseball, football, and ice hockey, with the groin/hip/thigh as the third highest injury incidence in basketball. When stratifying by more specific body part groupings, the knee demonstrated the greatest injury proportional incidence for basketball, football, and ice hockey, with the knee as the third highest proportional injury incidence for baseball. There was an increased in basketball ankle injuries following 2011-2012 season. Football and ice hockey reported the greatest concussion proportion incidence, with football demonstrating an increase in concussions over time, and a substantial increase in concussions from the 2014 to 2015 season. These publicly extracted data and findings can be used as a shared resource for professional baseball, basketball, football, and ice hockey for future individual and across sport collaborations concerning resource allocation and decision making in order to improve player health.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>There is ample evidence to suggest sex- and gender-based differences in the incidence of sports-related concussions. The mechanisms of concussion may vary between male and female athletes and contribute to this observed difference. Understanding the underlying etiology by pooling data from primary studies across different settings and sport types will inform interventions that can reduce concussion rates.<h4>Questions/purposes</h4>Specifically, we asked: (1) In which sports are female athletes less likely to experience concussions from player contact? (2) In which sports are female athletes more likely to experience concussions because of ball or equipment contact?<h4>Methods</h4>PubMed, EMBASE, and Cochrane Library databases were searched to identify articles published from January 2000 to December 2018. Ten studies met the inclusion criteria, which were studies that reported concussion incidence by mechanism for both male and female athletes. Exclusion criteria included non-English studies, conference abstracts, and studies on non-sports related concussions. The sports represented by the 10 studies included ice hockey (n = 4), soccer (n = 5), basketball (n = 4), baseball/softball (n = 4), and lacrosse (n = 5). The rate ratio was calculated as the incidence rate in female athletes/male athletes for each concussion mechanism or activity. Data were pooled using the DerSimonian-Laird random-effects model. Study quality was assessed with the Newcastle-Ottawa Scale.<h4>Results</h4>Female athletes were at lower risk of player-contact-induced concussions in lacrosse (pooled rate ratio 0.33 [95% CI 0.25 to 0.43]; p < 0.001), basketball (pooled rate ratio 0.86 [95% CI 0.76 to 0.97]; p = 0.01), ice hockey (pooled rate ratio 0.64 [95% CI 0.56 to 0.73]; p < 0.001), soccer (pooled rate ratio 0.70 [95% CI 0.66 to 0.75]; p < 0.001), and soccer heading (pooled rate ratio 0.80 [95% CI 0.72 to 0.90]; p < 0.001); in these sports, men were at higher risk of concussions from player contact. Female athletes were more likely to experience concussions because of ball or equipment contact in lacrosse (pooled rate ratio 3.24 [95% CI 2.10 to 4.99]; p < 0.001), soccer (pooled rate ratio 2.04 [95% CI 1.67 to 2.49]; p < 0.001), and soccer heading (pooled rate ratio 2.63 [95% CI 1.84 to 3.77]; p < 0.001).<h4>Conclusions</h4>The mechanism or activity underlying concussions differs between male and female athletes across different sports. This finding remains the same regardless of whether there are rule differences between the men's and women's games. The implementation of other interventions are required to further ensure player safety, including protective head equipment, concussion prevention training, or rules limiting player contact in the men's game.<h4>Level of evidence</h4>Level III, retrospective study.