Amid concerns over the risk of brain injury among professional athletes, Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital has launched a three-year study of how concussions affect brain development in young athletes.
Using an innovative mouth guard, researchers will log the location and force of impacts to the head, data that will be examined later.
In concert with this information, scientists will also assess changes over time in cognitive, emotional and behavioral metrics. Even blood and saliva will be monitored by the mouth guard to determine if there are warning signs in response to brain injuries.
A $500,000 grant from All Children’s Hospital Foundation is underwriting the study. Researchers at Johns Hopkins -- which treated over 500 concussions last year -- hope the study will aid diagnostic and treatment strategies.
“Our researchers are some of the first to combine the use of this unique equipment to track and monitor concussions while also studying student athletes through physical, emotional and behavioral assessments,” Dr. George Jallo, director at the Johns Hopkins All Children’s Institute for Brain Protection Sciences, said.
Opened in 1926, Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg is a 259-bed teaching hospital ranked among the best children’s hospitals by U.S. News & World Report.
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