Deakin University

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Gender differences in female and male Australian football concussion injury: A prospective observational study of emergency department presentations

Version 3 2024-06-12, 21:01
Version 2 2024-06-12, 13:28
Version 1 2024-05-29, 00:10
journal contribution
posted on 2024-06-12, 21:01 authored by J Stella, Stephen GillStephen Gill, N Lowry, T Reade, Tim BakerTim Baker, Kate KlootKate Kloot, G Hayden, M Ryan, H Seward, Richard PageRichard Page
AbstractObjectiveTo examine gender differences in Australian football (AF)‐related concussion presentations to EDs in regional Australia.MethodsA prospective observational study of patients presenting to 1 of the 10 EDs in Western Victoria, Australia, with an AF‐related concussion was conducted. Patients were part of a larger study investigating AF injuries over a complete AF season, including pre‐season training and practice matches. Information regarding concussion injuries was extracted from patient medical records, including clinical features, concurrent injuries, mechanism and context of injury. Female and male data were compared with chi‐squared and Fisher's exact tests. P < 0.05 was considered significant.ResultsFrom the original cohort of 1635 patients with AF‐related injuries (242 female and 1393 male), 231 (14.1%) patients were diagnosed with concussion. Thirty‐eight (15.7%) females had concussions versus 193 (13.9%) males (P > 0.05). Females over the age of 16 were more likely to be concussed than males in the same age range (females n = 26, 68.4% vs males n = 94, 48.7%; P = 0.026). Neurosurgically significant head injury was rare (one case). Similar rates of concurrent injury were found between females 15 (39.5%) and males 64 (33.2%), with neck injury the single most common in 24 (10.3%) concussions. Sixty‐nine patients (29%) were admitted for observation or to await the results of scans. The majority of concussions occurred in match play (87.9%). Females were more likely injured in contested ball situations (63.2% vs 37.3%; P < 0.05).ConclusionConcussion rates for community‐level AF presentations to regional EDs were similar between genders. Serious head injury was rare, although hospital admission for observation was common. Concurrent injuries were common, with associated neck injury most often identified. Match play accounted for the majority of head injuries.



EMA - Emergency Medicine Australasia









Publication classification

C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal