Concussion in Ice Hockey—A Cohort Study Across 29 Seasons

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Abstract

Objective:

The aim of this study was to analyze the concussion incidence rate ratios across 29 seasons in a Swedish Hockey League team.

Design:

Cohort study over 29 seasons within one Swedish elite series ice hockey team.

Participants:

All players who were part of one Swedish elite ice hockey team during the research period gave consent for participation in the study.

Independent Variables:

Exposure to top-level Swedish ice hockey.

Main Outcome Measures:

Incidence rate ratio for concussion and rehabilitation periods due to concussion were calculated and analyzed.

Results:

During the research period, 267 players in total were part of the team. A total of 1638 traumatic injuries were registered, of which 162 were concussions. Incidence rates (IRs) ranged from 0/1000 games during the first season to 118/1000 games for the final recorded season. The incidence rate ratio was 1.06 (confidence interval, 1.03-1.10) for the entire research period. A shift toward longer rehabilitation periods was discovered.

Conclusions:

This study showed a significant increase of concussion IR and a trend toward longer rehabilitation periods due to concussion. Possible risk factors were discussed. Risk behavior and rehabilitation protocols should be prioritized areas in the research of concussion in ice hockey.

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