Pediatric Concussion Program

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The Institute for Sports Medicine at Lurie Children’s is uniquely qualified to evaluate, manage and treat concussions in children and adolescents.

A concussion is an injury to the brain caused by a blow to the head or body. A concussion can affect a person’s physical and cognitive abilities and interrupt sleep patterns and emotional functioning. The number and severity of symptoms vary from person to person and can last from a few minutes to many months. 

In the video below, Cynthia LaBella, MD, head of our concussion program, reviews the signs, symptoms and treatment methods for concussions. Learn more about concussion signs and symptoms.

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The Lurie Children's Difference

Because concussions can affect children’s cognitive abilities in school, we’ve structured the Concussion Program to address our patients’ academic needs, as well as provide them with appropriate guidance regarding safe return to sports and physical activities.  Our team stays in contact with academic and athletic staff at the schools throughout the treatment process to make sure our patients have a smooth and appropriate transition back to both the classroom and to physical activities.

All of our patients are evaluated by a multidisciplinary team of concussion specialists, including pediatric sports medicine physicians, a pediatric advanced practice nurse and, certified athletic trainers; this team approach ensures comprehensive evaluation and management of each injury. 

Additionally, all of our specialists are actively involved in pediatric concussion research to further global understanding of these injuries and improve treatment.

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We offer easy online scheduling for your child's orthopedic needs. 

Resources & Support

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has numerous educational resources for athletes, parents, coaches and teachers as part of their Heads Up program , including an interactive website and app for coaches and parents to learn more about concussion and brain injury.

The following information is reviewed on the website: 

  • Brain injury basics
  • Minimizing brain injury risks 
  • Finding a proper helmet
  • Informational materials (videos, external links and downloadable PDFs) 
  • Clinician training for coaching staff

It is an excellent resource for the family that wishes to learn more on keeping their child healthy and safe.

The American Academy of Pediatrics has also released policy statements about the effects of concussions on learning and adolescents. Select a statement below to learn more.

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