Who can participate in this study?
- The study is open to any adult who participated in contact sports, including but not limited to football, soccer, ice hockey, boxing, wrestling, equestrian, motocross, cheerleading and many others.
Participants from all levels of play are welcome, including youth sports, high school, collegiate, professional and adult amateur leagues.
The study is open to residents from all across the United States.
For contact sport participants, it is not necessary to have a history of a known concussion.
- It is not necessary to have any cognitive or mood symptoms. We welcome symptomatic and asymptomatic participants.
- Individuals who served in the military or had a concussion from another cause are also welcome to sign up.
- You will be asked to provide a study partner, who can answer questions about how well you manage daily activities and if they noted any changes in your thinking abilities, behavior or mood. This can be a relative or someone else who knows you well and interacts with you on a regular basis.
- Currently, our questionnaires are only available in English. Sufficient English language skills will be required to complete the questionnaires.
- If you are visually impaired or unable to complete our questionnaires on a computer for another reason, please notify us during registration or during your initial phone assessment so that we schedule an extended phone meeting to complete the questionnaires.
What is involved for study participants?
- After you have registered for the study, we will schedule a phone call, where you will have the opportunity to ask questions about the study. We will also perform a brief over-the-phone evaluation of your thinking abilities.
- You will then complete a series of online questionnaires about your contact sport participation, medical history, brain trauma history, behavior, mood and how you manage daily activities.
- The questionnaires will take about 2 hours to complete. You may complete the questionnaires at your own pace using a secure website. For participants unable to complete questionnaires online, we will schedule a follow-up call with our study coordinator to complete the questionnaires over-the-phone.
- All information collected will be strictly confidential and will not be shared with the media, sports teams or other professional organizations.
- Data may be shared with other researchers but only after all identifying information has been removed.
- You will also be asked to provide a study partner i.e. a spouse, other relative or friend who knows you well. This study partner will be given access to a separate set of questionnaires about how well you manage daily activities and if they noted any changes in your thinking abilities, behavior or mood.
- We will contact you annually to update your medical history and symptoms and to complete follow-up questionnaires.
- All participants will be asked to provide provisional consent to donate their brains after they pass away for detailed examination by a neuropathologist. The brain autopsy is free of charge and results will be shared with your family.