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Concussion is a brain injury that needs to be taken seriously to protect the long term welfare of all players.
Any player suspected of having sustained a concussion, should be removed immediately from the field and should not return to play on the same day.
Where a Team Doctor is present, he/she should advise the person in charge of the team i.e. the Team Manager, in this regard and the player must not be allowed to continue his participation in the game.
Concussion is an evolving injury therefore it is important to monitor the player after the injury for progressive deterioration.
Concussion diagnosis is a clinical judgement it is not for unqualified personnel to decide that a player does not have concussion.
Players suspected of having a concussion, must have adequate rest of at least 24 hours (adult) and longer for children and then must follow a Gradual Return to Play Protocol.
Players must receive medical clearance (by a doctor) before returning to play.
Contrary to popular belief, most concussion injuries occur without a loss of consciousness and so it is important to recognise the other signs and symptoms of concussion. A symptom is something a player will feel whilst a sign is something a team-mate or coach will notice.
The most important aspect of concussion management is physical and cognitive rest until the acute symptoms resolve and then a graded program of exertion prior to medical clearance and return to play (RTP).
Medical clearance (medical clearance refers to medical doctors) is required prior to return to full contact sports.