PAR concussion app receives recommendation from NFL star Steve Young

steveyoungPlus, to mark Brain Injury Awareness Month, app is free through the end of March

PAR’s Concussion Recognition and Response (CRR) app, designed to help coaches and parents recognize whether an individual is exhibiting or reporting the signs and symptoms of a concussion, recently received accolades from former NFL quarterback Steve Young.

In addition, to recognize Brain Injury Awareness Month, the CRR app will be available for download free until the end of March.

The CRR app was developed by concussion experts Gerard A. Gioia and Jason Mihalik. It provides instruction during the assessment of an injury, a return-to-play guide, and extensive concussion information.

“As a former NFL player, national spokesperson for the Positive Coaching Alliance, and someone who has personally experienced the significant effects of a concussion, I believe every parent of a young athlete and coaches should be fully aware of the signs and symptoms of a concussion in a young athlete,” Young said. “To help them act and respond to this injury the right way, they need to have proper tools. Based on the great CDC Heads Up work that Dr. Gioia helped to create, the Concussion Recognition & Response App gives parents and coaches a great tool to identify kids with suspected concussions. It also is a great resource of information about concussions and what parents can do to help their child recover from the injury. This app should be a necessary part of every comprehensive youth concussion management and awareness program.”

Young played 14 seasons of professional football, all but two for the San Francisco 49ers. He retired in 1999 with the highest career passer rating among retired players and six NFL passing titles under his belt.

The app is available free through the end of March from the Apple® App StoreSM or Google Play.

Youth concussions are a hot topic in the news, with more and more emphasis being placed on athletes’ safety. Recent research found that even one concussion can result in long-term brain damage. What do you think? Leave a comment and get the conversation started!

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Introducing a Reduced Price for PAR Concussion Apps

When we introduced our two concussion apps, the Concussion Recognition and Response™ (CRR) and the Concussion Assessment & Response™: Sport Version (CARE), it was our hope that they would help as many children as possible to play sports safely. In order to reach a wider audience, we are pleased to announce that we will be reducing the price of the CRR app from $3.99 to 99 cents and the CARE from $9.99 to $4.99.

The CRR app helps parents and coaches to recognize when an individual is exhibiting signs and symptoms of a suspected concussion, helping them to respond quickly in less than five minutes.

The CARE app provides tools for athletic trainers, team physicians, and other qualified health care professionals to assess the likelihood of a concussion and respond appropriately in less than five minutes.

PAR donates 15 percent of the proceeds from the sale of this app to concussion research at the Children’s National Medical Center and the Matthew A. Gfeller Sport-Related Traumatic Brain Injury Research Center at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

Visit the App Store or Google Play to download your copy of the app today!

Concussion Recognition & Response™ Nominated for Appy Award

The Concussion Recognition & Response™: Coach and Parent Version (CRR) from PAR has been nominated for the prestigious Appy Award!  One of three finalists in the medical category, the CRR is an app for mobile phones and tablets that allows parents and coaches to quickly check for the signs and symptoms of a concussion when a young athlete is injured on the playing field.

The Appy Awards will be held on March 19, 2012, in San Francisco.  Finalists this year include well-known apps and brands including Mint, HBO, MLB At Bat, Home Depot, The Daily, Flipboard, Telenav and Ask.com, and growing upstarts like Westfield Malls, Viggle, Wine Road, iCookBook and SlideShark.  Along with PAR’s CRR, the other nominees in the medical category are drchrono, an electronic health record (EHR) platform for physicians, and WebMD, a mobile version of the popular health information Web site.

Since its inception, the Appy Awards have been designed to include all devices and platforms, and finalists are carefully chosen by the Executive Jury from hundreds of thousands of eligible apps. This year’s Jury includes fifteen veterans from three industries: software development, advertising and marketing, and technology publishing.  To learn more about the Appy Awards, and to view the full lineup of categories and finalists, visit http://AppyAwards.net.

Responding to Head Injuries on the Playing Field: An Athlete’s Perspective

Editor’s Note: This week, PAR is pleased to welcome guest blogger Alex Trujillo. A senior at Holderness School in Plymouth, New Hampshire, Alex is an intern this summer in the production department at PAR. He recently had the opportunity to try out our new Concussion Recognition & Response™ app.

As a high school athlete, I experience the culture of sports in an acute way from the inside. Every day on the field, I am in an environment that perpetuates toughness, playing through pain, doing whatever it takes to win, and doing this all for the good of the team. While in principle this is not so horrible (even though it goes against the dogma that fun should be the underlying principle of amateur athletics), it is often taken too far in the wrong ways.

PAR’s Concussion Recognition & Response™ app is part of the growing trend that discourages “toughing out” injuries to the head, as these specific injuries can have extremely negative effects on an athlete if not handled properly. This trend challenges old–fashioned coaches who speak of the “glory days” when one played through absolutely any injury, coaches who believe that the new wave of players should embrace this antiquated ideology. The athletes of today are bigger, stronger, and faster than ever before. Yet some coaches put their athletes in danger by pushing them in ways that are perilous to their health. It is good for a coach to motivate and push a player to their physical limits and beyond. This is what good coaches do: They get the most out of every player on their team. However, some coaches try to push their players through injuries, such as concussions, without knowledge of the severity of the injury. Playing through strained muscles, soreness, bumps and bruises, aches and pains is all part of sports. However, a head injury is not something that can be “toughed out.” Research has shown that some cases of degenerative brain diseases, for example Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, and various other ailments, can be attributed to continuous abuse of the head over the course of an athletic career. The culture of toughing out all injuries, including those to the head, needs to stop now. The first step towards a change in culture is education about the topic, which is what PAR’s new Concussion Recognition & Response app can help to do.

I have tried the app out myself, and it is very easy to use. It takes the user through a series of yes or no questions, listing symptoms of a concussion and whether or not the athlete displays any of those symptoms. Included are ways to record how the injury occurred, immediate and delayed symptoms, and GPS coordinates to show of the location of the incident.

It would make me feel safer and more supported as an athlete if this app was available on the sideline. If I were to sustain some kind of head trauma—get my “bell rung”—it would be comforting to know that an educated decision about whether to continue playing could be made, even when I was not in the presence of an athletic trainer.

New App Helps Coaches and Parents Recognize and Respond to Possible Concussions in Young Athletes

A new Concussion Recognition & Response™ app from PAR allows coaches and parents to quickly determine whether an individual is exhibiting and/or reporting the signs and symptoms of a suspected concussion. In less than 5 minutes, coaches and parents can complete a checklist of possible signs and symptoms to help them decide whether to remove the child from play and seek medical attention. The app also provides home symptom monitoring for post-injury follow-up. Designed for the iPhone®, iPad®, iPod® Touch, or Android device or tablet, the app is now available for download from the Apple® App StoreSM or Android Market.

Using information from the CDC’s Heads Up: Concussion in Youth Sports program, the app guides users through a set of questions to determine the likelihood of a suspected concussion based on observations by the parent or coach as well as symptoms reported by the athlete. The device’s GPS records where the incident took place; its camera enables you to photograph the injured party; e-mail allows you to forward accurate information and documentation to a health care provider.

After follow-up with health care providers, the app enables a parent or caregiver to record a child’s symptoms through periodic evaluations, which are tracked during the hours, days, or weeks following an injury. This information can be e-mailed to health care professionals, providing an update on the athlete’s recovery.

The app also includes a Return-to-Play Guide that helps protect children and athletes from further injury by guiding them through a 5-step, tiered exercise routine. In collaboration with the child’s health care provider, parents and coaches can use the guide to ensure that the child is able to handle added exercise without further injury or discomfort. The app’s concussion information section provides general information about concussions along with answers to frequently asked questions for parents and coaches.

Users may customize the look and feel of the app with sport-related themes, including hockey, football, and lacrosse—and more themes will be available soon.

PAR’s Concussion Recognition & Response app was developed by concussion experts Gerard A. Gioia, PhD, and Jason Mihalik, PhD. Gioia is a pediatric neuropsychologist and the chief of the Division of Pediatric Neuropsychology at Children’s National Medical Center, where he directs the Safe Concussion Outcome, Recovery & Education (SCORE) Program. Mihalik is an assistant professor in the Department of Exercise and Sport Science at the University of North Carolina; he currently serves as the co-director of the Matthew A. Gfeller Sport-Related Traumatic Brain Injury Research Center.

PAR will donate a portion of all proceeds from the sale of this app to support concussion research at the Children’s National Medical Center and the Matthew A. Gfeller Sport-Related Traumatic Brain Injury Research Center.