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Baseline profiles of auditory, vestibular, and visual functions in youth tackle football players

White-Schwoch, T.; Krizman, J.; McCracken, K.; Burgess, J. K.; Thompson, E. C.; Nicol, T.; Kraus, N.; LaBella, C. R.

Concussion. 2020 Jan 28; 4(4):Cnc66


AIM: Neurosensory tests have emerged as components of sport-related concussion management. Limited normative data are available in healthy, nonconcussed youth athletes. PATIENTS & METHODS/RESULTS: In 2017 and 2018, we tested 108 youth tackle football players immediately before their seasons on the frequency-following response, Balance Error Scoring System, and King-Devick test. We compared results with published data in older and/or and nonathlete populations. Performance on all tests improved with age. Frequency-following response and Balance Error Scoring System results aligned with socioeconomic status. Performance was not correlated across neurosensory domains. CONCLUSION: Baseline neurosensory functions in seven 14-year-old male tackle football players are consistent with previously published data. Results reinforce the need for individual baselines or demographic-specific norms and the use of multiple neurosensory measures in sport-related concussion management.

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