American Speech-Language-Hearing Association

Amid Reports Of Increased Head Trauma In Youth Sports, SLPs' Vital Role Managing Concussion Recovery Highlighted In Brainline.org Article

They Can Aid Earlier Identification And Intervention Of Post-Concussion Symptoms

(Rockville, MD - September 8, 2010)  

Following a recent report from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) that youth sports-related concussions have increased 200% from 2001 to 2005, a new article currently featured on BrainLine.org—a national multimedia project about preventing, treating, and living with traumatic brain injury—highlights how integral speech-language pathologists (SLPs) are to the concussion management process and in reducing the risk of long-term complications.

Written by Melissa C. Duff, PhD, CCC-SLP, Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders and the Department of Neurology at the University of Iowa and a member of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), the article outlines the unique skills of SLPs that can help athletes who have suffered a concussion transition back to school.

Dr. Duff contends that SLPs should have a more central role in the decision-making process regarding whether injured student athletes should return to play/school because they (a) are familiar with administering standardized tests, (b) have extensive clinical decision-making expertise, and (c) are trained in various areas of cognition and cognitive disorders.

Throughout her article, Dr. Duff advocates that SLPs understand that earlier identification of any post-concussive symptom and intervention are vital to a child's recovery and academic success. Therefore, SLPs should not only be used to help athletes who have experienced a concussion transition back to school but should also be routinely involved in concussion management from the outset.

Dr. Duff is available for media interviews. To schedule, contact Greg Weimann at 301-296-8731 or gweimann@asha.org.

About the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association
ASHA is the national professional, scientific, and credentialing association for more than 140,000 audiologists, speech-language pathologists, and speech, language, and hearing scientists. Audiologists specialize in preventing and assessing hearing and balance disorders as well as providing audiologic treatment including hearing aids. Speech-language pathologists identify, assess, and treat speech and language problems including swallowing disorders.

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