The incidence of concussions and potential for long-term health effects has captured the attention of the media, general public, medical professionals, parents, and obviously the athletes themselves. Concussions have been blamed for a variety of mental and physical health issues. The athletic trainer is at the forefront of the concussion management team, as they are typically on the scene when the concussion occurs and are often the first medical personnel to evaluate and, hopefully, remove the athlete from activity. There has been controversy of late regarding the influence of coaches in the care of concussed athletes. Therefore, a move to the “medical model” of sports medicine management can go a long way in resolving conflict of interest issues regarding the care of concussed athletes. A comprehensive concussion team and protocol are also essential to providing the highest level of care. This article takes a closer look at concussion management in the collegiate arena, with a particular focus on Princeton University.
Thompson is the head athletic trainer at Princeton University, Princeton, NJ.