National and state experts to converge for Concussion Conference Jan. 31

Jan. 29, 2014 - National and local experts on treating concussions will converge at the Center for Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences on Quinnipiac University's North Haven Campus from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 31, for "The Concussion Conference: Connecticut Return to School Then Return to Play."

Designed for school nurses, school staff, athletic trainers, parents and pediatricians, The Concussion Conference will offer sports organizations and schools local training to update how they manage concussions in student-athletes to help them recover while managing legal risks for schools and sports organizations. The conference will detail the specific academic and symptom monitoring roles school personnel should implement to collect informal data to drive decision making, as well as the importance of establishing a concussion return to school protocol for districts. 

"Concussions are traumatic brain injuries," said conference organizer Katherine Snedaker, who consults on youth sports concussion at the state, national levels and international levels using social media, via SportsCAPP.com. She also participated in the concussion health and safety meetings at the NFL Headquarters for the last two years. 

"Students returning to the full demands of school too soon following concussion can significantly increase and prolong symptoms," Snedaker said. "Due to the increasing numbers of concussions being identified, schools need efficient ways to streamline the process, while collecting data to make appropriate educational decisions. Early identification and symptom-based academic accommodations are key. Most concussions resolve within the first month, but many linger several months or longer. Schools should be prepared to track, monitor, and manage academic changes and symptom changes at school." 

In addition to Snedaker, the other national speakers and state experts who will speak are:
  • Brenda Egan Brown, a certified brain injury specialist
  • Dr. Karen Laugel, a board-certified pediatrician and medical director of HeadZone, a concussion recovery management practice in Shelton
  • Dr. Mike Lee, a board-certified pediatrician who has been treating children and teens with concussions for almost a decade. He is a co-author of the American Academy of Pediatrics report, "Returning to Learning Following a Concussion."
  • Jimmy Sanderson, an assistant professor in the Department of Communication Studies at Clemson University, who is researching concussion and health issues in sports.
  • Dr. Thomas Trojian, an associate professor of family medicine and orthopedics and director of the Injury Prevention and Sports Outreach Programs in the New England Musculoskeletal Institute at the UConn Health Center.
  • Dr. David Wang, an assistant professor of Orthopedics at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine who is a sports medicine physician with more than 20 years of specialized care for youth athletes.
Representatives from the Brain Injury Association of Connecticut, Connecticut Athletic Trainers Association, student athletes and parents also will participate. The Concussion Conference has been endorsed by:
  • Association of School Nurses of CT ASNC
  • Brain Injury Alliance of Connecticut
  • CT Association of Public School Superintendents CAPSS
  • CT Association of Schools CAS
  • CT Athletic Trainers Association CATA
  • CT Chapter of American Academy of Pediatrics CT AAP
  • CT Concussion Task Force CCTF

To register, please visit www.theconcussionconference.com.