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Guidelines for diagnosing and managing paediatric concussion: Ontario Neurotrauma Foundation guideline
  1. Sakura Hingley,
  2. James Ross
  1. Chelsea and Westminster NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr James Ross, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, 369 Fulham Road, London SW10 9NH, UK; James.ross{at}

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Information about current guideline

Concussion, relating to professional sport, has appeared in the headlines with increasing frequency over the last few years. The lessons learnt have trickled down to amateur and youth sport, and in June 2014, the Ontario Neurotrauma Foundation (ONF) published the “Guideline for diagnosing and managing paediatric concussion”1 with the aim to guide healthcare professionals in diagnosing concussion in children. The guideline is not limited to the initial assessment and management but includes a structure for ongoing reassessment, return to school and sport and an approach for managing common complications.

The ONF, funded by the Government of Ontario, is a “health organisation that focuses on the practical application of research to improve the lives of people with an acquired brain injury or spinal cord injury, and the prevention of neurotrauma injuries”.

The guideline targets a multidisciplinary approach in the education around the recognition and management of concussion, with recommendations not only for healthcare professionals but also parents and/or caregivers, schools and/or community sports organisations/centres.

The guideline covers the recommendations by timeline, including suggestions to perform baseline neurocognitive testing in children/adolescents who play high-risk sports to assist with return-to-play decisions should concussion be sustained, initial assessment and management when injury is sustained, discharge advice and reassessments for the child following a concussion.

Previous guidelines

While previous tools, such as the Child SCAT3, have addressed the assessment and initial management of concussion, …

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  • Contributors SH: conception and design. SH and JR: manuscript draft, revision and final approval.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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