Concussion: Why Nurses Need to Understand This Hidden Injury

Ann Worley


Pediatr Nurs. 2019;45(5):235-243. 

In This Article

Pre-participation Baseline Testing

A commonly asked question concerns the value of pre-baseline testing;, a pre-season assessment conducted by a trained provider to measure an athlete's balance and brain function, such as memory, attention, and problem-solving; as well as the athlete's concussion history and risk factors. These pre-injury test results would be compared with results following a potential injury and the effects of the injury identified, thus enabling a more informed and individualized treatment and RTP decision (CDC, 2015b). Although not considered essential for all athletes, baseline testing enables the child's provider to discover any potential individual risk factors and to educate the player/family about concussions pre-season (McCrory et al., 2017). For children with learning disabilities this pre-testing can be particularly beneficial because it provides a baseline profile of the child's existing deficits by which to compare performance post-injury.