Department of Health Sciences and Kinesiology
Waters College of Health Professions

Concussion Information

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Concussions are all over the news these days. Whether it is on ESPN’s Sportscenter, a CNN special by Sanjay Gupta, or another front page story in the New York Times – stories about concussions seem to be everywhere. The purpose of this page is to provide basic information about concussions, address several common misconceptions, and answer some typical questions we receive about our research and laboratory. Please remember, nothing on this site should be mistaken for medical advice and if you believe you may have suffered a concussion, please consult a physician and not the Internet!

What is a Concussion?

The 4th International Consensus Statement on Concussion in Sport defines a concussions as, “a brain injury and is defined as a complex pathophysiological process affecting the brain, induced by biomechanical forces.”

What is this 4th International Consensus Statement on Concussion?

The 4th International Consensus Statement on Concussion (or 4th CIS) was a gathering of leading experts, both clinicians and researchers, in Zurich, Switzerland which occurred in November 2012. This meeting occurs approximately every three years and the experts update the current knowledge and best-practice patterns for the medical management of concussions.  The 4th CIS is freely available online from the Journal of Athletic Training.

Do you have to get knocked unconscious in order for a concussion to have occurred?

No! In fact, the vast majority, probably over 90% of concussions do not involve loss of consciousness and ~75% do not involve memory loss. A large scale study of NCAA athletes found that the most common symptoms of a concussion include: headache, blurred vision, feeling in a “fog” or just not feeling right, dizziness, feeling slowed down, concentration problems, sensitivity to light or noise, fatigue, drowsiness, and memory problems.

Last updated: 1/25/2018

Department of Health Sciences & Kinesiology •