Assessment of Saccades and Gaze Stability in the Diagnosis of Pediatric Concussion

A recent study featuring PISC Senior Scholar Daniel Corwin, MD, Executive Committee member Catherine C. McDonald, PhD, RN, Senior Scholar Kristy Arbogast, PhD, and Senior Scholar David S. Metzger, PhD, evaluated whether varying repetitions of saccades and gaze stability testing can be utilized in youth concussion diagnoses. The team compared 69 adolescent athletes recovering from a sports or recreation related concussion to 69 adolescent athletes who had not experienced a recent concussion. Symptom provocation of saccades and gaze stability testing was performed on all athletes up to 30 times. Results indicated that sensitivity improved for horizontal saccades, vertical saccades, and vertical stability. The discriminatory ability was highest when repetitions were repeated more than 20 times, with an Area Under the Curve of 0.79. By increasing repetitions of saccades and gaze stability testing, clinicians can more accurately diagnose youth concussions.

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