Girls May See Longer-Lasting Concussion Effects

Symptoms of sports-related concussions may last longer for teen girls

(RxWiki News) Adolescent girls may have to deal with the symptoms of sports-related concussions for longer than boys, according to a new study.

In fact, these symptoms may persist for more than twice as long for teen girls. And the reason for this may be tied to underlying conditions like stress, anxiety, depression and migraines, this study found.

The researchers behind this study pointed out that conditions like anxiety, depression and stress are more common in teen girls than in teen boys. These conditions also happen to mirror some common concussion symptoms. And past research has found that concussions can make conditions like this worse.

"These findings confirm what many in sports medicine have believed for some time," said lead study author Dr. John Neidecker, a sports concussion specialist, in a press release. "It highlights the need to take a whole person approach to managing concussions, looking beyond the injury to understand the mental and emotional impacts on recovery when symptoms persist."

This study looked at more than 200 teen athletes who were between 11 and 18 years old and had been diagnosed with their first concussion. Roughly half of the study participants were girls.

For the boys in this study, concussion symptoms typically disappeared after 11 days. For girls, it took around 28 days, this study found. The authors of this study said addressing underlying conditions in teens who have concussions could lead to faster recovery times.

Concussions are caused by a strong impact to the head. These injuries can be extremely dangerous, so it's important to seek medical care if you suspect that you or a loved one may have a concussion.

This study was published in the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association.

The study authors disclosed no outside funding sources or potential conflicts of interest.

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Review Date: 
October 13, 2017