Return to Play: Concussion Protocol
The Return to Play Progression that Merion Mercy Academy will follow is:
- A computerized neurocognitive test (ImPACT Test) will be administered by the Athletic Trainer or the consulting physician.
- Referral to a doctor that is trained in concussion care per Senate Bill No. 200. Clearance needs to be granted with the stipulation of the following return to play progression.
- The athlete must be symptom free at rest without medication for a minimum of 24 hours. Return to baseline scores on the post injury computerized neurocognitive testing must be achieved.
- The athlete must report to the Athletic Trainer daily to document symptoms.
Step 1 – Light aerobic exercise to increase heart rate. Example of this would be biking, walking or the elliptical for 10 – 15 minutes.
Step 2 – If there are no symptoms for 24 hours after step 1 then progress to moderate exercise. Example of this would be moderate biking, walking or elliptical for 20 – 30 minutes.
Step 3 - If there are no symptoms for 24 hours after step 2 then progress to non-contact practice or physical activity. Example of this would be interval training on a treadmill or running, weight training and agilities.
Step 4 - If there are no symptoms for 24 hours after step 3 then progress to contact practice.
Step 5 - If there are no symptoms for 24 hours after step 5 return to full sport activity.
This is a general outline of a Concussion Return to Play, however each concussion will be handled on an individual basis. Time between steps may vary depending on the individual, number of previous concussions, other factors and physician recommendations.