Concussion Issues
Concussion Experts Coming to Unprecedented October Meeting
Sep 15, 2015 - 12:14:00 PM

( - PITTSBURGH, Sept. 15, 2015 - Thirty-five of the leading U.S. concussion clinicians and researchers are scheduled to join together Oct. 15-16 at UPMC for an unprecedented meeting designed to propose and share nationally the participants' agreement on the best practices, protocols and active therapies for treating concussions today. The conference discussions, resulting in a Statement of Agreement to be published in the journal Neurosurgery, will be led by chair Micky Collins, Ph.D., along with co-directorsAnthony Kontos, Ph.D., and David Okonkwo, M.D., Ph.D., of UPMC and the University of Pittsburgh.

Among the visitors actively participating and the guests attending and auditing the invite-only conference are representatives, board members and/or consultants with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institutes of Health (NIH), the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), Major League Baseball, the NCAA, NFL, NFL Players Association (NFLPA), USA Football, USA Rugby and U.S. Soccer, among others.

The conference's visiting expert participants, confirmed to date:

"We want to move the needle, and this meeting could do that," said Dr. Collins, executive and clinical director of the UPMC Sports Medicine Concussion Program. "Neuropsychologists, neurosurgeons, neurologists, psychiatrists, physiatrists, family medicine physicians, emergency medicine physicians, physical therapists, certified athletic trainers, researchers - people from across so many disciplines - are uniting for the first-ever conference to reach agreement on active treatments for concussion. Awareness with no solution is called hysteria; awareness with a solution is called science."

Dr. Kontos is the research director for the UPMC Concussion Program and associate professor in theUniversity of Pittsburgh Department of Orthopaedic Surgery. Dr.Okonkwo is a professor of neurological surgery and clinical director of the Brain Trauma Research Center at the Pitt School of Medicine.

Also participating from UPMC are: Anne Mucha, Ph.D., physical therapy; Joseph Maroon, M.D., neurosurgery, Pittsburgh Steelers and NFL consultant; and Tony Yates, M.D., internal medicine, Pittsburgh Steelers and NFL head, neck and spine committee.

The conference, announced Aug. 18, will conclude Oct. 16 with a panel discussion and media availability.

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About UPMC Sports Medicine
UPMC Sports Medicine serves as the official sports-medicine provider of the Pittsburgh Steelers and Pittsburgh Penguins while also caring for more student-athletes than anyone else in Western Pennsylvania. Nowhere in the state can a patient find more certified athletic trainers and board-certified, licensed physical therapists, more research into injuries that apply to clinical use. Its sports-medicine physicians work in conjunction with the UPMC Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, ranked No. 10 nationally by U.S. News & World Report. UPMC Sports Medicine is noted for its expertise in concussion evaluation and treatment, nutrition, mental training, injury prevention, performance training and aging athletes. It serves more than 50 local high schools, colleges and other organizations, in addition to individual elite, amateur and recreational athletes along with non-athletes facing injuries or issues related to physical activity.


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