• Thirty-eight million children and adolescent participate in scholastic and recreational sports every year and it is growing significantly every year. 1
 
  • In high school alone there are 2 million injuries a year reported from a population of participants measured at 7.34 million in which 4.32 million are male and 3.02 million are female. 2
 
 
  • According to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, in 2007 there were 920,000 football participants under the age of eighteen treated in emergency rooms.
 
  • Approximately 2- 3 million young athletes suffer a concussion each year. 3
 
 
  • Female adolescent athletes have the greatest risk of ACL injuries, with rates 4 to 6 times as high as for their male counterparts in similar sports. 4
 
  • Annual healthcare costs for the treatment of injuries in youth athletes is approximately $2.5 billion a year; the treatment for long term problems related to youth injuries adds another $3 billion per year. 5
 
 
  • In high school alone there were five hundred thousand doctor visits and thirty thousand hospitalizations in one previous year. 6
 
  • The NCAA medical reports 25% of all money went to injuries in cheerleading compared to 57% on football - interesting considering football has 10 times the number of participants. A six fold increase since 1981. 7
 
  •  Each year, 4.3 million visits are made to the emergency room for youth sports related injuries. 
 
 
 
 

CONCUSSION

  • In 2007, a study was published in Clinical Journal of Sports Medicine that examined the knowledge of concussion symptoms and management among youth sport coaches. A 16 question survey was developed to assess concussion knowledge in 156 active youth sport coaches with an average with a range of 1-22 years of coaching experience. The average number of correct responses was approximately 9 correct responses, only slightly above half. Previous coaching education predicted better symptom recognition, emphasizing that education and training are needed for better recognition and management of concussion in youth sports.
 
  • A study looking at the prolonged effects of concussions in high school athletes (published in 2005 in the journal of Neurosurgery), showed significant neurological effects in youth athletes who sustained two or more concussions. Two Hundred and twenty three high school athletes were assigned to groups based on history of concussions: either i. no concussions ii. one concussion, but symptom-free iii. Two concussions, but symptom free; and iv. those who experienced a concussion 1 week before testing.
 
  • A study published in 1995 by the American Academy of Pediatrics looked at the medical care and discharge instructions for youth athletes who were hospitalized due to a concussion, and found that only about 30% of patients received appropriate discharge instructions.
 
  •  In a more recent study, published in 2013, researchers looked at close to 500 sports-related concussion injuries from 2004 to 2010 to determine if patients received adequate discharge instructions. Results showed only 66% of cases were given appropriate discharge instructions, increasing to 75% after 2010. The component most frequently missed was the guideline for cognitive rest (avoidance of school, work, TV, etc).
 
  • In 2011, a study showed that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) “Heads Up” toolkit affected physician recommendation, specifically, when to return to sports activities. In the study, physicians who were mailed the toolkit were much less likely to recommend next day return to play after a concussion, which is recommended by the CDC.
 
  • A study published in Australia looked at the dissemination of concussion management guidelines, and determined that messages have not reached community sports coaches and trainers. In the study, a survey was sent to approximately 900 coaches and trainers in football and rugby. Although 90% of respondents correctly identified five of eight major symptoms of a concussion, fewer than 50% recognized the increased risk of another concussion following an initial concussion, or that scans don’t always show damage to the brain after a concussion occurs. This shows that despite the large amount of attention and resulting published content on concussion prevention and management, key messages are not getting to youth sports coaches.  
 
  • A study published in 2004, investigated unreported concussions in 20 high schools in the Milwaukee, Wisconsin area and found that less than half (47.3%) of the survey respondents reported their concussion to a coach or athletic trainer.
 

SUDDEN CARDIAC ARREST

 
  • In a 2012 meta-analysis (a study that looks at previously written published articles on a topic), researchers reviewed over 396 studies (with 30 studies meeting appropriate criteria) to determine if ECG testing was effective in identifying the 3 most common cardiac disorders associated with SCD (HCM, LQTS, and Wolff-Parkinson-White Syndrome).  The results of this literature review showed that ECG was a sensitive test for mass screening of these disorders.