Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center and UB Orthopedics & Sports Medicine of Niagara have implemented ImPACT, the Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing program.
Developed in the early 1990s by doctors Mark Lovell and Joseph Maroon, ImPACT is a 20-minute test that has become a standard tool in comprehensive clinical management of concussions for athletes of all skill levels from youth sports to the professional ranks. It is the most widely used computer-based concussion testing program in the world.
"ImPACT brings the concussion clinic at our Summit Healthplex office in Wheatfield to a whole new level," said Anthony Surace, M.Ed., A.T.C., Memorial's director of sports medicine. "It is an objective tool that helps us determine the safe return to play for the athletes we treat."
The program was developed by ImPACT Applications Inc., which was co-founded by Mark Lovell, Ph.D., Joseph Maroon, M.D., and Michael Collins, Ph.D., of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.
The program takes about 20 minutes to complete and measures multiple aspects of cognitive functioning in athletes, including:
•Non-verbal problem solving
Surace said recent publicity given prominent athletes who have suffered concussions - including hockey stars such as Nathan Gerbe of the Buffalo Sabres and Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins - has raised awareness of just how serious these head injuries can be.
"The focus at our concussion clinic is on concussion education and prevention," he said. "Nonetheless, concussions are common in sports and ImPACT is a valuable tool that will help us diagnose them when they occur and ensure a safe return to play for athletes who suffer them."
For information, call UB Orthopedics & Sports Medicine of Niagara at 304-6585 or visit www.Impacttest.com.