UChicago Athletics set to participate in NCAA-DOD concussion study in 2016-17

UChicago Athletics set to participate in NCAA-DOD concussion study in 2016-17

CHICAGO – The University of Chicago varsity athletics programs will take part in a national concussion study sponsored by the NCAA and U.S. Department of Defense starting in the summer of 2016.

UChicago was added as one of nine new participants in early March to the Concussion Assessment, Research and Education (CARE) Consortium study. The CARE Consortium now includes 30 participating institutions nation-wide.

This research is part of the landmark $30 million NCAA-U.S. Department of Defense initiative to fund the most comprehensive study of concussion and head impact exposure ever conducted. The study will enroll an estimated 25,000 male and female NCAA student-athletes over the three-year study period. Participants will receive a comprehensive preseason evaluation for concussion and will be monitored in the event of an injury.

The Longitudinal Clinical Study Core of the study, led by the University of Michigan, is a prospective, multi-institution clinical research protocol that aims to study the natural history of concussion among NCAA student-athletes. This investigation will be the largest ever of its type.

"We are thrilled to be selected by the CARE Consortium and honored by the opportunity to participate in this forward-reaching study," said UChicago Director of Athletics Erin McDermott. "Our selection speaks to the excellence of our medical resources on campus and the overall quality of our athletic program. Meaningful concussion research to inform the most effective preventative measures and post-occurrence treatments is critical to the future safety and well-being of students and the continued vitality of college sports. We are proud to be at the University of Chicago where performing impactful research is of highest priority and a cornerstone of our educational mission."

Holly Benjamin, M.D., will serve as principal investigator and oversee data collection and analysis for the CSC site on campus. Benjamin is employed at UChicago as Professor of Pediatrics and Orthopaedic Surgery and also as Director of Primary Care Sports Medicine. Head Athletic Trainer Mary Wisniewski, as well as Bruce Reider, M.D. – Head Team Physician and Professor Emeritus of Orthopaedic Surgery – are co-investigators. The UChicago Athletic Training Staff will perform the baseline testing. The University's CARE study participation will run the duration of the 2016-17 academic year.

"The University of Chicago has a long standing tradition of excellence in athletics and a commitment to the NCAA as a Division III school," Benjamin said. "This is an excellent opportunity to have our athletes contribute to research in the area of concussions that occur in a collegiate environment. It's a tribute to the superior care our athletes get and the organization of the athletic training and varsity athletic program that we were able to be selected out of 138 applications to be one of the new study sites."

Clinical Study Core research sites (led by University of Michigan)

  • Azusa Pacific University
  • Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania
  • California Lutheran University
  • Humboldt State University
  • Princeton University
  • Temple University
  • United States Military Academy at West Point
  • United States Air Force Academy
  • United States Coast Guard Academy
  • United States Naval Academy
  • University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)
  • University of Chicago
  • University of Delaware
  • University of Florida
  • University of Georgia
  • University of Miami (Florida)
  • University of Michigan
  • University of Nebraska
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • University of North Georgia
  • University of Oklahoma
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • University of Pittsburgh
  • University of Rochester
  • University of Washington
  • University of Wisconsin
  • Virginia Tech
  • Wake Forest University
  • Wilmington College (Ohio)
  • Winston-Salem State University