Sideline assessment of concussion and return to play – are we practising what we preach?


A different shaped ball, a different World Cup….. Similar challenges

The more things change the more they stay the same…..this post by CJSM Executive Editor Chris Hughes was written in 2011 about the RUGBY World Cup incident involving a guy named Parra. Could have been written about the recent brouhaha over the 2014 FOOTBALL World Cup incident involving the guy named Pereira. In both cases, a player was inappropriately put back on to the field.

Be sure to take a look as well at the Zurich Consensus Statement on Concussion in Sport, found in the CJSM.  The section on the sideline evaluation of the player suspected of having a concussion is especially well written.

Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine Blog

The seventh Rugby Union World Cup competition ended last saturday in a tense final between strong favourites, the famous New Zealand All Blacks, and France, the former holding out for a one-point win 8-7 over Les Bleues.

The game featured a number of injuries, but one caused more of a stir than most – the injury to the French number 10 Morgan Parra.

Parra took what appeared to be an accidental blow to the side of his head from the knee of All Blacks’ Captain Richie McCaw in a ruck, and appeared to be visibly concussed, looking shaky on getting up after receiving lengthy on-field medical attention. The incident can be seen in this video.

He was taken from the field of play and replaced by Trinh-Duc. Surprisingly, however, he re-appeared on the field after around 5 minutes and continued to play on for another 5 minutes until he experienced another…

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About sportingjim
I work at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio USA, where I am a specialist in pediatric sports medicine. My academic appointment as an Associate Professor of Pediatrics is through Ohio State University. I am a public health advocate for kids' health and safety. I am also the Deputy Editor for the Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine.

2 Responses to Sideline assessment of concussion and return to play – are we practising what we preach?

  1. physioshane says:

    And look at that, despite the original discussions in the sports medical profession those years ago with similar incidents. And with the increasing media attention in NFL, and Rugby. And the increasing research around this showing the impacts. Its probably fare to say that ‘research’ to ‘dissemination’ has occurred very well (which is something we can’t say for most research). So people know the impact, and the best management is widely shared. BUT yet what went wrong? it’s still occurring, can we thus decide that ‘teams performance’ over-rules ‘athletes well-being’ still in the modern era? Or are the medical profession not being hard enough on the coaching staff, ref’s or stamping their ground? FIFA with all their money, should at least be able to afford implement a medical board to over-see all “medical related decisions” (as the ‘medical’ referee’s). The games referee’s are for technical/game related rules, and thus it should be a ‘medical’ professional to rule over ‘medical’ related decisions and decide if a team can put a player back on the field or not. If we can’t get things so widely known, so widely published in the media, and so dangerous right, how will we ever be able to make any impact on optimal management of less common or less serious injuries such as groin or hamstring injuries??

  2. Pingback: The World Cup Final and More | Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine Blog

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