Reporting of Postconcussion-Like Symptoms in Collegiate Male Athletes and Non-Athletes
Elizondo-Farias, Yolanda P.
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The purpose of the present study was to compare male athletes and non-athletes on how they would respond to postconcussion-like symptoms, specifically how likely they would be to inform a family member or physician of their symptoms. Postconcussion syndrome is a course of events of cognitive, emotional and physical changes, which are frequently reported after a severe head injury. Forty-five male student athletes and non-athletes were recruited to self-report perceived depression and stress in their lives and to rate the frequency, intensity and duration of each of ten separate symptoms that are mainly associated with postconcussion syndrome. It was hypothesized that non-athletes would have fewer postconcussion-like symptoms and demonstrate lower scores on a measure of depression than athletes. It was also hypothesized that scores on a measure of stress would positively correlate with both postconcussion-like symptoms and the likelihood of reporting symptoms. Two independent samples t-tests and four multiple regression analyses indicated no differences between athletes and non-athletes, and no significant prediction of likelihood of reporting symptoms from scores on a postconcussion syndrome symptom instrument and a measure of depression. The independent variable for the t-tests was the status of the participant, athlete or non-athlete, and the dependent variables were likelihood of reporting symptoms to a parent or a physician. The multiple regressions on athletes and non-athletes used likelihood for reporting to a parent or a physician, as the dependent variables with the Beck Depression Inventory II (BDI) scores and the Post Concussion Symptom Checklist (PCSC) scores as predictor variables. Additional regression analyses included the Perceived Stress Scale (PSS) as predictor variable, to determine if PCSC and BDI scores would predict likelihood of reporting with PSS scores taken into account. Although the hypotheses generally were not supported, there was a significant correlation between scores on the postconcussion symptom checklist (PCSC) and a measure of stress, indicating that more research should be done in that area on the relationship between stress. It would be worthwhile to pursue future research following athletes over time