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LO48: Similarities and differences between sports and recreation-related concussions and concussions from non-sport activities

  • L. Gaudet (a1), L. Eliyahu (a1), M. Mrazik (a1), J. Beach (a1), G. Cummings (a1), D. Voaklander (a1) and B. Rowe (a1)...

Abstract

Introduction: Patients with concussion often present to the emergency department (ED). Although sports and recreation (SR) activities account for less than half of all adult concussions, guidelines developed for management of SR-related concussions (SRC) are widely used for all concussion patients. This study aimed to identify whether there are clinically relevant differences in patient and injury characteristics between SRC and those occurring outside of SR activities. Methods: Adults ( >17 years) presenting from April 2013 to April 2015 with a concussion to one of three EDs with Glasgow coma scale score ≥13 were recruited by on-site research assistants. Data on patient characteristics (i.e., age, sex, employment, lifestyle, relevant medical history), ED presentation (i.e., EMS arrival, hours since injury, CTAS, Glasgow Coma Scale score) and injury characteristics (i.e., activity leading to injury, loss of consciousness [LOC], signs and symptoms [scored using the Rivermead Post-Concussion Questionnaire], and health-related quality of life [from the 12-Item Short Form Health Survey [SF-12]) were collected from structured interviews and the ED chart. Dichotomous and categorical variables were compared using Fisher's exact test; continuous variables were compared using t-tests or Mann-Whitney tests, as appropriate. Results: In total, 248 patients were enrolled (47% male, median [IQR] age: 35 [23, 49]). Patients with SRC were younger (median: 23.5 years vs 35 years; p < 0.001), more likely to be a student (31% vs 8%; p > 0.001), and more likely to exercise regularly (89% vs 66%; p = 0.001). Patients with SRC were less likely to present during the daytime (66% vs. 77%; p = 0.022), less likely to have a history of mental health issues (18% vs 33%; p = 0.011) and had significantly higher median SF-12 physical components scores (55.5 [IQR: 51.4 to 57.8] vs. 53.5 [IQR: 45.5 to 56.7]; p = 0.025). All other characteristics were similar between the two groups. Conclusion: Although differences in demographics and lifestyle have been identified between patients sustaining a SRC and those concussed during other activities, injury characteristics, such as presentation acuity, proxies for severity, and signs and symptoms, were similar in both groups. Further analysis to assess whether the demographic and lifestyle differences affect clinical outcomes, such as time to symptom resolution, between these two groups is required to assess if sport-based treatment guidelines are appropriate for all patients.

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