Role of sport-related concussion on academic achievement among youth athletes

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ObjectiveDetermine change in report card grades in youth after sustaining an acute sport-related concussion.DesignProspective case-series.SettingPaediatric, multi-disciplinary concussion.Participants48 youth athletes (mean age 14.3; SD: 0.9; male: 57.6%) who sustained a sport-related concussion during the school year. Overall, 3 youth were lost to follow-up and 12 youth submitted only one report card.Interventions (or assessment of risk factors)Subsequently developing Post-Concussion Syndrome (PCS: symptomatic after 30 days), initial concussion severity (Post Concussion Symptom Scale), self-reported concussion history, sex, age, and academic accommodations during recovery.Outcome measuresThe report card immediately before the concussion and the report card immediately after medical clearance were collected. Pre-concussion and post-concussion overall and core grade-point average was calculated from report cards. Core grade-point average (GPA) included math, sciences, social studies, English, and foreign languages.Main resultsOverall GPA was 82.9% (SD 8.5%) pre-concussion and 82.7% (SD 8.0%) after concussion recovery (difference: −0.2%, 95% CI: −1.6%, 1.1%). Core GPA was 80.0% (SD 10.1%) pre-concussion and 79.4% (SD 10.4%) after concussion recovery (difference: −0.6%, 95% CI: −2.8%, 1.6%). There were no significant differences in overall or core GPA when stratified by sex, age, initial concussion severity, previous concussion history, receiving adequate school accommodations during recovery, or subsequently developing PCS.ConclusionsThere were no statistically or clinically significant changes in overall or core GPA during concussion recovery. Further research is needed to determine if there are more subtle changes in academic performance during the recovery process.Competing interestsNone.

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