Use of a Sport-Related Concussion Information Sources Among Parents of United States Middle School Children

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Health Professions


Objective: Parents may use various information sources to obtain information about sport-related concussions (SRC). This study examined SRC-related information sources used by parents of United States middle school children (aged ∼10-15 years).

Methods: A panel of 1083 randomly selected U.S. residents, aged ≥18 years and identifying as parents of middle school children, completed an online questionnaire capturing parental and child characteristics, and utilization and perceived trustworthiness of various sources of SRC-related information. Multivariable logistic regression models identified factors associated with utilizing each source. Adjusted odds ratios (OR) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) excluding 1.00 were deemed significant.

Results: Doctors/healthcare providers (49.9%) and other healthcare-related resources (e.g., Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, WebMD) (37.8%) were common SRC-related information sources; 64.0% of parents utilized ≥1 of these sources. Both sources were considered "very" or "extremely" trustworthy for SRC-related information among parents using these sources (doctors/healthcare providers: 89.8%; other healthcare-related resources: 70.9%). A 10-year increase in parental age was associated with higher odds of utilizing doctors/healthcare providers (adjusted odd ratio (ORadjusted) = 1.09, 95%CI: 1.02-1.16) and other healthcare-related resources (ORadjusted = 1.11, 95%CI: 1.03-1.19). The odds of utilizing doctors/healthcare providers (ORadjusted = 0.58, 95%CI: 0.40-0.84) and other healthcare-related resources (ORadjusted = 0.64, 95%CI: 0.44-0.93) were lower among parents whose middle school children had concussion histories versus the parents of children who did not have concussion histories.

Conclusion: One-third of parents did not report using doctors/healthcare providers or other healthcare-related resources for SRC-related information. Factors associated with underutilization of these sources may be targets for future intervention. Continuing education for healthcare providers and educational opportunities for parents should highlight accurate and up-to-date SRC-related information.


Published by Journal of Sport and Health Science at 10.1016/j.jshs.2020.04.008.

Publication Title

Journal of Sport and Health Science

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