What is ImPACT®?
ImPACT® (Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing) is a computer-based program that evaluates cognitive functioning following head injury.
Testing is recommended for patients 12 and older and involves both pre-injury and post-injury assessment.
Pre-test = $35.00 (due at the time of service)
When and how often should my child be tested?
Baseline or pre-injury testing should take place during the pre-season – ideally before practice starts – and should be repeated every 2 years to establish an accurate standard for comparison.
If your child suffers an acute head injury, your pediatrician will determine if and when post-injury testing is needed.
How long does the test take and what does it evaluate?
Testing takes approximately 20 minutes and assesses cognitive functioning, including:
- Attention span
- Working memory
- Sustained and selective attention time
- Response variability
- Non-verbal problem solving
- Reaction time
Why is it important for my child to be tested?
ImPACT® is a valuable component of concussion management – results help trained healthcare professionals identify the effects of an acute head injury, manage recovery, and make more informed return-to-learn and play decisions.
How do I get my child tested?
ImPACT® testing is currently offered at our Westside Office.
- Please call 503-531-3434 to schedule your child’s pre-test.
- If your child has a suspected concussion, please schedule an appointment with your pediatrician for evaluation.
- Your provider will determine whether post-injury testing is appropriate.
General Information about Concussions
A concussion is a temporary loss of brain function that occurs following a head injury.
Concussions can result from playing any sport, but happen more often from engaging in contact sports like football, soccer, or lacrosse. There is also the risk of concussion from other activities, such as riding a bike or skateboarding. Basically any time an individual suffers a blow to the head, a concussion could develop.
Concussion symptoms generally appear immediately following the injury, but some may show up hours or even days later. Loss of consciousness is NOT required for a concussion diagnosis.
Signs of Concussion:
- Thinking (cognitive)
- Confusion/memory loss
- Trouble concentrating
- Slow verbal responses
- Mood changes
- Trouble sleeping
- Nausea or vomiting
- Blurred vision or light sensitivity
- Noise sensitivity
If you suspect your child may have a concussion, the best thing you can do is encourage cognitive rest. This means your child should take a break from texting, watching TV, using the computer, or playing video games while recovering! NEVER let your child return to sports or physical activity the day of the injury. For more information, see: Concussion Care for Kids: Minds Matter.
All children and teens with suspected concussions should see their pediatrician before returning to play. Concussions are serious injuries and seeing a medical professional ensures that your child receives appropriate testing and clearance to resume activity or sports.
Returning to play before recovery can be detrimental to your child’s health. While healing, individuals may be more susceptible to another concussion or in some cases, even death. Be sure to let your child’s pediatrician know about ALL prior concussions, so he or she can make informed recommendations.
- Limit physical and mental activity (e.g., homework, TV/computer use, video games, texting)
- Supervise your child during waking hours (sleep is an important component of healing)
- Reduce activities that increase symptoms (e.g., listening to loud music)
- Drink plenty of fluids (dehydration can exacerbate headaches)
Report any worsening of concussion symptoms or changes in behavior to your pediatrician.
Recovery time varies based on individual healing rate, the severity of the concussion, and past history of concussions. All sports activity should be suspended until symptoms have completely resolved and the athlete has received clearance to resume activity from his or her pediatrician.
No athlete wants to suffer a sports-related injury and get caught on the sidelines.
Follow these suggestions to stay in the game:
- Wear a helmet whenever possible, especially when playing contact sports
- Utilize safe playing techniques
- Follow game rules
- Let an adult know if you experience ANY head injury
- ImPACT – Testing and Computerized Neurocognitive Assessment Tools
- “Concussions” by the American Academy of Pediatrics, www.healthychildren.org.