Vision Test Helps Detect Concussion in Athletes

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A timed vision test may aid in detection of concussion during sideline testing of athletes
A timed vision test may aid in detection of concussion during sideline testing of athletes

HealthDay News -- A timed vision test may aid in detection of concussion during sideline testing of athletes, according to research published in Concussion.

Kristin M. Galetta, MD, of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and colleagues conducted a systematic review of the literature and a meta-analysis of data from 15 studies to estimate preseason baseline King-Devick (K-D) scores and determine the sensitivity and specificity of the test in identifying concussed versus nonconcussed (control) athletes. The K-D test is a vision-based test of rapid number naming.

The researchers found that baseline K-D (n=1,419) showed a weighted estimate of 43.8 s (95% confidence interval [CI], 40.2 to 47.5 s; I2=0 percent; P = 0.85, indicating very little heterogeneity). Sensitivity for the K-D test was 86%, and specificity was 90%.

"The K-D test is a rapid, reliable, sensitive and specific test for concussion," the authors wrote. "Any worsening in time from a baseline K-D score is indicative of a concussion. The K-D test has the potential to screen for unwitnessed, or sub-concussive, neurologic impairment as the result of injury from impulsive forces."

Two authors have ties to Biogen and Genzyme, and one author is an employee of King-Devick Test Inc.

References

1. Galetta K, et al. Future Medicine. 2015; doi: 10.2217/cnc.15.8.

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