Pre-screening and Concussion/Balance Testing
Our clinic is now offering pre-season baseline testing & Concussion Management. We have been using the ImPACT concussion system and Sway Balance Concussion Management App and Protocol as our screening and testing device. Using a smart phone or tablet our therapists can perform "baseline" testing on clients. As concussions have become the focus for both professional and amateur athletes ever since high profile athletes like Sidney Crosby, we continue to be at the forefront of concussion diagnosis, management, and rehabilitation.
With our collaboration with Sway Balance we look at:
- 22 various signs/symptoms of a concussion
- Neurocognitive testing
- Balance testing
- Convergence testing
- Comprehensive baseline testing for sports teams and individuals in Oakville, Milton, Mississauga and Burlington
- Post-injury diagnosis and injury management
What is a concussion?
A concussion can be simply defined as a disruption in neurological functioning following a significant impact to the head or elsewhere on the body. This causes a biochemical imbalance within brain cells as well as decreased blood flow and temporary energy deficits within the brain.
Following a suspected concussion, a player should be immediately removed from play, assessed and placed on complete rest in order to recover from the energy deficit. Studies have shown that any activity, both mental and physical, in the immediate days following concussion can delay the process of recovery and should be avoided until the athlete is completely symptom free.
The biggest concern surrounding concussions comes from the energy deficit that occurs in the brain following injury. When the brain is in this low energy state, it has been well established that the brain is extremely vulnerable to additional trauma, where even smaller impacts can lead to another concussion; and these second concussions can cause severe brain injuries with potentially permanent or fatal outcomes.
The problem is that symptoms (meaning how someone feels) do not coincide with brain recovery. The only way to know when the brain has fully recovered and out of this “vulnerable period” is to compare current brain function to when the individual was healthy; this is what is known as a “baseline test”.
What is baseline testing?
A baseline test is a battery of tests that measures every area of brain function that could potentially become affected following a concussion(you need more than computer tests. The reason that the test is termed a “baseline”is because it is done BEFORE the athlete gets injured. In order to know when an athlete has fully recovered, we first have to know where they were when they were healthy. Without having this information, there is no way to truly know when an athlete has fully recovered and is safe to return to their sport.
Baseline testing is the most important thing to get done prior to beginning your sports season on a yearly basis. Just Sway Balance we can establish a "baseline" and show the athlete where he/she sits in terms of normal results. If the athlete receives a concussion further sport tests are performed and compared to the earlier "baseline" results.
Sway Balance is a concussion app based company that educates healthcare practitioners on concussion therapies and management strategies based on the most current medical research so that they may provide the highest quality of concussion treatment and follow-up outside of professional sports.
Clinics using various concussion apps are continuously updating the current research and treatments in order to manage these injuries properly and safely to ensure adequate recovery, thereby limiting the risk of further injury and long-term brain damage.