Junior quarterback John Glazier sat on the turf dazed and confused after taking a blow that caused his head to take a beating against the ground.Glazier was out for the remaining of the game vs. Detroit Country Day and was eventually diagnosed with a concussion.
“When I got my concussion, I was confused for a while and I started to cry like crazy,” Glazier said.
Glazier’s tears were just one of approximately 15 different symptoms that are involved with a concussion. Some of those include headache, poor balance, nauseam fatigue, irritability, and tearfulness/sadness.
On Saturday March 26, 2011, the Seaholm football program had guest speaker Dr. Kenneth Podell come talk to players and parents about the effects of concussions and possibly doing baseline testing with not only the football team, but all Seaholm student-athletes.
“The idea originated with my wife, Sheryl, and Brad Czajka,” football booster president Craig Frye said. “Through their research they found Dr. Podell and announced at the football banquet last year that it was something we were going to try to do.”
Dr. Kenneth Podell is associated with the Division of Neuropsychology and the Sports Concussion Safety Program at Henry Ford System.
Podell was also one of the founders and developers of the company Impact Testing System. He is also the Concussion Administrator for the Detroit Lions, Red Wings, Tigers, Wayne State and 9 Metro Detroit area High Schools.
“Were trying to find better and better ways to diagnose concussions,” Podell said in his speech. “More importantly were trying to find better recoveries.”
A concussion is considered a “brain sprain.” When an athlete hits an object or is hit, his or her brain can bang into the skull as well as twist or stretch. Additionally, when the head makes contact with something, energy is created that travels through the brain disrupting brain functioning.
“The most important thing in diagnosing treatment is understanding the symptoms,” Podell said.
Athletes with three or more concussions vs. Zero to two are three times more likely to have an in-season concussion.
“I don’t think I am at more risk,” senior Brandon Wiseman, who has suffered three concussions, two while playing soccer. “Everyone tells me to be careful about it, but I’m going to do what I have to do regardless.”
Recovery time for a concussion differs among athletes and sports.
“It took around two weeks [to recover] after I was diagnose,” sophomore Dalton Geraldo said. “But I had with it for a week or two before.”
70% of High School athletes recover in two weeks, 50% recover in 1 week and, and 15% need three plus weeks.
Another factor in recovery time is age. Younger players tend to need a longer time to recover.
“My first concussion was at age 13,” Wiseman said. “It took a really long time to recover from that one but the next two didn’t last as long.”
The next step for concussion baseline testing would be to sign the contract with Dr. Podell. The contract would allow all the contact sports at Seaholm to allow their athletes to take the test.
“[Dr. Podell] would come in and train a designated person,” Frye said. “That person would then be allowed to administer the tests.”
The test would consist of 15 players at a time in a computer lab taking a series of computer oriented tests. If the person fails the test they will be forced to take it again. Once the test is taken twice, the player will be sent to their pediatrician and a decision on their ability to play will be made from there.