Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Study Spotlight: Athletes w/ Specific Genotype at Greater Risk for Longer Recovery From Concussion

Genes.  When everything comes down to it they are the basis for everything.  Things are moving faster and faster in the world of using genes in athletics.  We have talked before about Nutrigenomics and utilizing genes to actually showy what foods you respond to best and which ones you don't (our article HERE).  Most recently a story has come out showing how Baylor Football is using DNA testing to look at how they should be working out their athletes.  It's incredible and now that world is moving into concussion management and prediction.  Check out what one study found below:

What They Did:
Researchers documented information on 40 athletes that were diagnosed with concussion in a hospital concussion program.  They monitored and checked several ares to see how athletes responded after they suffered the concussion.  These included vestibular ocular assessments, balance testing, ImPACT (computer) testing as well as a salivary sample to isolate certain DNA.

What They Found:
What Dr. McDevitt and her team found was that athletes carrying a specific genotype (CACNA1E s704326, to get technical) were found to have a much greater risk of prolonged recovery following a concussion.

What It Means:
So this could mean all kinds of things but personally I think it lend to the safer return of athletes who have suffered from concussion.  There has been much research looking at concussion protocols to get people back healthy and safe but it is such a subjective injury that often can be hard.  Having more objective data and knowing people are subject to longer recovery can aid in the recovery process and help eliminate an overly quick return to activity.

When I talk to athletes about concussion I emphasize one thing, it is your brain.  You can recover from ankle sprains and probably play through a good part of them but you use your brain forever and if it goes wrong it goes wrong in a big way.  Take your time and heal.

McDeviit, Jane.  Athletes carrying specific genotype at greater risk of prolonged recovery following concussion.  American Orthopedic Society for Sports Medicine

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