Research from UVA suggests one gender recovers faster from concussion

Published: Aug. 24, 2021 at 4:18 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Work by researchers with the University of Virginia suggests women recover from concussions much faster than men.

Jake Resch with UVA’s Department of Kinesiology and School of Education says his findings differ what other studies have suggested.

“This actually is opposite of what’s in the majority of the literature suggesting that females take longer to recover then male athletes,” Resch said. “When looking at timeframes, females tend to recover around four to five days earlier than their male counterparts.”

He says having athletic trainers available at every practice and game is vital to helping athletes recover.

UVA Associate Athletic Director for Sports Medicine Kelli Pugh agrees: “Having athletic trainers on the field allows for early recognition of concussions, and then you can treat appropriately,” she said. “The sooner you get them out of activity, the sooner everybody is going to feel better.”

Both Pugh and Resch say it’s important for athletes to set their pride aside when they take a blow to the head.

“You only have one brain,” Pugh said. “We can fix your ankle, or your knee, or your shoulder, but it is much harder to fix a brain.”

“They don’t want to let their coach or team down, they don’t want to be perceived as weak, they don’t understand the severity of the injury,” Resch said.

Following this research, Resch is planning to take a deeper dive into the data.

“We’re going to conduct a multi-site study, so we have 22 universities from across the United States that are working with the University of Virginia to provide us that data from 2015 to 2020 to really take a closer look,” Resch said.

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