Reports of youth concussions spiked by 71 percent between 2010 to 2015, according to a study of nearly 937,000 health insurance claims gathered by Blue Cross and Blue Shield (BCBS). The analysis also found that concussion diagnoses during that period increased 26 percent among adults ages 20 through 64.
“The study shows that there is more awareness about the seriousness of concussions and that younger individuals are receiving more care for these injuries than in the past,” Dr. Trent Haywood, senior vice president and chief medical officer for BCBSA, said in a news release. “But despite greater awareness and new protocols aimed at protecting young athletes, there is still wide variability in the rate of concussions diagnosed from state to state.”
Study authors found concussion diagnoses for youths— patients ages 10 to 19— were highest in the Northeast. Connecticut, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts had the most concussion diagnoses in the United States.
Researchers also observed that rates were highest in the fall season and that reported diagnoses among males is nearly double that of females during that time of year. But overall, researchers observed a larger increase in reported concussion diagnoses among young females during the study period— 118 percent— than among young males, who saw a 48 percent increase of reported diagnoses during the period. Still, more males appear to be diagnosed with concussions: During the study period, reports of male concussions overall were 49 percent higher than that of young females.
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SOURCE: Fox News