The Concussion Health Awareness and Management Program (CHAMP) is an integral component of Beaumont's comprehensive approach to concussion care. CHAMP offers pre- and post-concussion screenings for athletes and other individuals age 13 and older through ImPACT (Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing). ImPACT is a computerized brain injury measurement tool that identifies subtle changes in brain function, evaluates post-injury condition and tracks recovery.
By comparing baseline (pre-injury) and post-injury test results, ImPACT can help determine the severity of a concussion and enable health care providers to determine when it is safe to return to play, school or work following a concussion.
ImPACT is the most widely used and most scientifically validated computerized concussion evaluation system. It provides trained clinicians with neurocognitive assessment tools and services that have been medically accepted as state-of-the-art best practices. The program has received numerous accolades and endorsements from many of the world's leading sports authorities, governing bodies, teams and athletes. It is in use by many teams in Major League Baseball, the National Hockey League and the National Football League as well as thousands of high school and collegiate athletic programs and many other organizations.
Beaumont's five-step approach to concussion health management
- Step 1 - Pre-season baseline ImPACT testing and education
Students will be scheduled to take a supervised baseline ImPACT computerized test by a trained instructor. Each student will receive a baseline score. Students will also receive education on how to prevent a concussion and what to do if a concussion is suspected.
- Step 2. Concussion suspected following a blow to the head
Students who have a concussion or may have had a concussion need to be immediately removed from play, activity or school. An appointment should be scheduled at Beaumont's Comprehensive Concussion Clinic within 72 hours for evaluation by a certified neuroscience health care provider.
- Step 3. Post-injury testing and treatment plan
Students will take the ImPACT computerized test within 72 hours of sustaining the possible concussion and will be evaluated by a certified neuroscience health care provider. The ImPACT post-injury computerized test score will be compared to the student's baseline ImPACT score to assist in determining the best concussion treatment plan for each student. The student will receive a copy of the written treatment plan that can be used to guide any necessary modifications at school.
- Step 4. Determine ability to return to non-contact activity
The student will be re-evaluated in the Beaumont Comprehensive Concussion Clinic to determine if the student meets the following criteria: A) symptom-free at rest and with cognitive exertion B) ImPACT test score is within normal range of baseline ImPACT test C) normal physical exam If A, B, and C are not met, then return to Step 3. If A, B and C are all met, then the student will receive a stepwise return-to-play progression beginning with light non-contact activity and progressing to full noncontact exertion.
- Step 5: Determine safe return to play
If the student's ImPACT test score is back to baseline and the student does not have any recurring symptoms at rest or during physical activity, then the student will receive written clearance to return to play.
The Beaumont Comprehensive Concussion Clinic will refer students to a specialist if the student's ImPACT test score is not back to baseline and/or if symptoms are still present two weeks following the concussion.
At what age should a child be ImPACT tested? How long does the test take?
ImPACT testing is recommended for children 13 and older. The first ImPACT test will provide a set of baseline results that can then be used to compare to post-injury results. The ImPACT test takes approximately 25 to 30 minutes.
While any child would benefit from ImPACT testing, it is especially useful for children involved in athletics who may have a higher risk of traumatic brain injury.
It is recommended that children have a baseline ImPACT test every two years until the age of 18 to account for aging and brain maturation. If a child has already had a concussion and has never had a baseline test, the student can still take the postconcussion test and the results can be compared to normative data.