Concussion baseline testing is a useful tool to establish each individual athlete’s performance status. In the event of a head injury, an athlete’s baseline test will assist the practitioner in performing an adequate post-injury evaluation, determine an appropriate treatment plan, and promote safe return to sport. IBJI offers two options for baseline concussion testing.
The most widely used baseline test is ImPACT testing, which is offered in the comfort of your own home through the IBJI Sports Access app and as a complimentary service at 12 of our IBJI locations. In addition to the ImPACT test, the Sports Neurology team at IBJI also offers an in-depth neurological pre-participation evaluation (Neuro PPE) with our board-certified neurologist. These neurological evaluations are offered to any athlete, however are highly recommended for those athletes with prior history of concussion, regular headaches, problems with sleep and mood disorders including anxiety and depression.
ImPACT is a computerized test that assesses the following aspects of cognitive function: attention span, working memory, sustained and selective attention time, response variability, non-verbal problem solving and reaction time. It also assesses baseline symptoms and severity of those symptoms. While ImPACT testing is not diagnostic, having an understanding of your child’s baseline abilities is beneficial when the clinician is making return to activity decisions after a concussion. The test will take approximately 30 minutes.
At no point will the ImPACT test assess the level of skill or ability, and will not be used to determine the level of play, performance, or amount of participation.
You can now take an ImPACT test from the comfort of your home with the help of IBJI’s Sports Access app. Download the app from the App Store or Google Play. Once in the app, click to opt-in and submit the required information. IBJI will then send you a unique code via email to begin your test. For those baselines taken at IBJI facilities, IBJI will appropriately store test results and comply with applicable legal requirements relating to protected Protected Health Information (PHI) policies.
If you would prefer to take a complimentary ImPACT test at an IBJI clinic, they are offered by appointment only at the following IBJI Rehabilitation locations: Bannockburn, Buffalo Grove, Chicago-Avondale, Chicago-Sauganash, Glenview, Grayslake, Gurnee, Highland Park, Libertyville, Morton Grove, Schaumburg, Wilmette.
Taking pre-season baseline testing to the next level, the Neurological Pre-Participation Evaluation (Neuro PPE) is an in-depth assessment of your athlete’s neurological function. This will include a review of neurological history including any previous concussions or other underlying issues including headaches, inadequate sleep or mood disorders such as anxiety or depression, a detailed neurological examination and recommendations for safe play and optimization of long-term brain health.
Next, we will assess the athlete’s neck strength and range of motion in addition to balance and vestibular systems which are often affected post injury. Lastly, the athlete will complete an injury prevention screen.
Neuro PPE evaluations are intended for all athletes. This evaluation is recommended to be completed once every two years, unless there is a change to the athlete’s medical history or the athlete had a suspected/confirmed concussion within the past year.
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