HealthDay News — Impact location has a minimal effect on concussion income for patients who sustain concussion due to football player-to-player collisions, according to researchers.

“A more complete understanding of concussions in high school football is needed to assist clinicians in diagnosing and managing concussed athletes,” wrote Zachary Y. Kerr, PhD, MPH, of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and colleagues in Pediatrics.

To describe the epidemiology of concussions resulting from player-to-player collision by impact location, the investigators collected data from the National High School Sports-Related Injury Surveillance Study from 2008-2009 to 2012-2013.

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In player-to-player collisions, most concussions occurred from front-of-the-head (44.7%) and side-of-the-head impacts (22.3%). Impact location was not associated with the number of symptoms reported, prevalence of reported symptoms, symptom resolution time, or length of time to return to playing.

The proportion of players sustaining concussions who experienced loss of consciousness was larger for those with top-of-the-head impacts (8.0%) versus impacts to other areas of the head (8.0% vs. 3.5%; injury proportion ratio, 2.3; P=0.008). The proportion of players with their head down at the time of impact was higher for concussions caused by top-of-the-head impacts versus concussions from impact to other areas of the head (86.4% vs. 24%; injury proportion ratio, 3.6; P<0.001).

“Recommended strategies for reducing the proportion of top-of-the-head impacts include improved education regarding tackling with proper ‘head-up’ technique,” suggested the researchers.


  1. Kerr Z et al. Pediatrics. 2014; doi: 10.1542/peds.2014-0770