A new report summarizing facts and research on Female Concussion was published in February by Womens' Sports Foundation. The report was excerpted and adapted from the larger study by Staurowsky, E.J., DeSousa, M.J., Miller, K.E., Sabo, D., Shakib, S., Theberge, N., Williams, N., & Veliz, P. (2015). Her Life Depends On It III: Sport, Physical Activity, and the Health and Well-Being of American Girls and Women. East Meadow, NY: Women’s Sports Foundation.
This two page report states that research on the incidence of concussions generally shows higher rates among female athletes at both the collegiate and high school levels.
"Particular attention has been given to analyses in soccer and basketball, where men and women play by similar rules and ice hockey, a sport that is largely similar in the men’s and women’s game with the important difference that intentional body checking is prohibited in the women’s game." Data for all three sports show higher rates among females at both the high school and collegiate levels (Hootman, Dick & Agel, 2007; Dick, 2009; Rosenthal et al., 2014).
The trend that worries me the most was the "emerging evidence that indicates that female soccer players playing elite or select soccer before high school sustained concussions at a rate higher than their high school and college counterparts, most continued to play despite experiencing symptoms, and less than half sought medical attention." And this mirrors the results in my own study of female athletes who reported playing through their concussions.
We need to address the female concussions in Youth Sports - in soccer, hockey, cheer, basketball... wherever girls, along with boys, are getting concussions with untrained coaches and an absence of athletic trainers.