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Scots concussion guidelines highlight the need for a UK wide approach

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The Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine UK (FSEM) welcomes the launch of Scottish Sport Concussion Guidelines for the general public and for grassroots sports participants, where specialists in Sports and Exercise Medicine are not available to manage concussed players. The FSEM would like to see similar guidelines produced, not just for sport, but to improve recognition, assessment and management of all concussions in the UK.

Dr Roderick Jaques, President of the Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine UK comments: “Concussion is recognised to be one of the most challenging of injuries to diagnose, assess and manage. Best practice clinical pathways from injury to return to play, work or school for a concussed person, outside of the elite sports setting, are not always easily accessible in the UK.

“The Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine fully supports the new Scottish guidelines for the recognition, assessment and management of concussion. We would like to see great initiatives like this developed to deliver UK wide concussion guidelines applicable to anyone handling a suspected concussion.”

Sport Scotland, the Scottish National Sporting Bodies, Medical Royal Colleges and the Scottish CMO have produced the guidelines that are intended to provide information on how to recognise sports concussion and on how sports concussion should be managed from the time of injury through to a safe return to play.

The guidelines stress that, at all levels and in all sports, if an athlete is suspected of having a concussion, they must be immediately removed from play.

Any player with a second concussion within 12 months, a history of multiple concussions, player with unusual symptoms or prolonged recovery should be assessed and managed by health care providers (multidisciplinary) with experience in sports-related concussions.

The overriding message is that ALL concussions are serious and if in doubt, sit them out!

The FSEM recognised the need for a national best practice consensus on concussion last year and has been working with a group including UK National Sporting Bodies and Medical Royal Colleges.The group would like to see consistent best practice, recognition, management guidelines and care pathways adopted from ground level up, across all sectors in the UK and by all health and allied professional groups, where concussion is encountered.

Ends

View the Scottish Sport Concussion Guidelines on the Sport Scotland website

Follow the twitter conversation – #concussion @FSEM_UK

Further information on the FSEM’s concussion group and its aims can be found on our website http://www.fsem.ac.uk/media-resources/policy-and-public-affairs.aspx

Notes to Editors:

  • The Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine was launched in 2006 and is an intercollegiate faculty of the Royal College of Physicians of London and the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh
  • The Faculty has over 560 Members and Fellows, not including medical students
  • There are around 94 Sport and Exercise Medicine Doctors on the GMC specialist register
  • The FSEM not only sets standards in SEM but oversees research, training, curriculum and assessment of SEM Doctors, including providing revalidation services
  • Sport and Exercise Medicine consultants work in a variety of musculoskeletal and exercise medicine services across NHS primary and secondary care. They also work within sports from the ‘grass routes’ level up to supporting international teams and athletes
  • The specialty has a large scale application in improving the musculoskeletal and physical health of the general public through exercise advice and prescription. Further information about the specialty can be found in the Media & Resources section at www.fsem.co.uk

Follow FSEM on Twitter @FSEM_UK  Linkedin and Facebook  Web: www.fsem.co.uk

For further information contact Beth Cameron, PR & Communications for the Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine.

Email: pr@fsem.ac.uk, Tel: 0131 527 3498, Mobile: 07551903702