Prognostic Factors in Pediatric Sport-Related Concussion


Purpose of Review

Sport-related concussion (SRC) and mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) have been thrust into the national spotlight, with youth athletes bearing the burden of this public health problem. The current review aims to provide a practical summary of pediatric SRC, including key terminology, return to play/school, and risk factors for post-concussion syndrome (PCS).

Recent Findings

While the majority of youth athletes recover within 2 to 4 weeks, approximately 10% of athletes experience a protracted recovery with symptoms lasting months, impacting social, scholastic, and sporting activities.


In the pediatric population, the strongest predictors of PCS are initial symptom burden and prior concussion, with mixed results behind the factors of gender, headaches, and learning disability. The role of psychiatric, family history, sports, and socioeconomic factors remain in their infancy.

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Corresponding author

Correspondence to Scott L. Zuckerman.

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Conflict of Interest

Gary S. Solomon reports personal fees from the National Football League, personal fees from NHL Nashville Predators, other from Tennessee Titans, other from University of Tennessee Athletics, other from Tennessee Tech Athletics, other from Department of Defense, outside the submitted work. Benjamin L. Brett, Aaron M. Yengo-Kahn, Scott L. Zuckerman, and Aaron Jeckell each declare no potential conflicts of interest.

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This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.

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This article is part of the Topical Collection on Pediatric Neurology

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Zuckerman, S.L., Brett, B.L., Jeckell, A.S. et al. Prognostic Factors in Pediatric Sport-Related Concussion. Curr Neurol Neurosci Rep 18, 104 (2018).

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  • Sport-related concussion
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Post-concussion syndrome
  • Modifying factors
  • Prognosis