Experts continue to develop new protocols on concussions

The important thing is not to avoid sports all together, but to know what to do if something should happen to you

QUAD CITIES (KWQC) – Experts are continuing to research concussions and develop new protocols, while talk of sports-related injuries has spread quickly over the last few years.

“It’s much different from when I was playing, even when I was coaching,” said Davenport Schools director of Athletics Jon Flynn.

There’s new tests, like baseline testing for brain and physical function. It’s an exam you take before a concussion and compare results to after an injury.

“Baseline testing is very important because it compares you to you,” said lead physical therapist at Genesis Health System Silvis Laura Frankowski. “If you have your data before you’re ever injured, you know what your function was.”

Tests like these are required for many student athletes across the Quad Cities, including those in the Davenport School District.

“I was a coach until 2009 and during that time, none of this was in existence,” said Flynn. “I think the research is just catching up with what coaches and athletes have known for a long time.”

Frankowski said young children and those who participate in more non-traditional sports should think about getting a baseline test done.

“It’s not just a football issue. It’s really any activity…skateboarding, cheerleading, dance, swimming,” she said. “8 years old and above would really benefit from it, especially if they’re playing sports.”

Flynn said all of their high school athletes get a baseline test, but they’re thinking about expanding it to the middle schools.

“We’re really trying to be at the forefront of what’s happening and providing the best services for our students,” he said.

Both said they don’t want the tragedy of what happened to Tyler Sash to cast a dark cloud on sports.

“The important thing is not to avoid sports all together, but to know what to do if something should happen to you,” said Frankowski.

“There are now statistics coming out, showing how safe contact sports can be if all the proper steps are being taken,” said Flynn.

If you’d like to set up an appointment to get a baseline test at Genesis Health System, CLICK HERE. Or you can call 563-421-0800.

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