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Simple reaction test may help diagnose concussions

Category: General Wellness

Simple reaction test may help diagnose concussionsA simple, inexpensive test that measures reaction time may help doctors evaluate whether an athlete has had a concussion, a new study has found.
Researchers from the department of physical medicine and rehabilitation at the University of Michigan recently created the device, which consists of a cylinder attached to a weighted disk.

In the study, the apparatus was tested on more than 200 college football, wrestling and soccer players during training camp. Each athlete who suffered a concussion during the season took the examination for a second time within days of the injury.

The researchers found that seven of the eight athletes who suffered a concussion had a 15 percent longer reaction time than they did on their first examination.

"Because of its simplicity and low cost, this test may work well with youth athletes, where there is limited access to computerized testing of reaction time," concluded lead author James Eckner.

He added that the current tests used to evaluate concussions require expensive technological equipment and software that may not be available to all sports programs.
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