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Baseline and Concussion Testing

Listen to Dr. Moser speak on what you need to know about Baseline Testing (Audio)

Dr. Moser speaks on what you need to know about Baseline Testing - Dr. Rosemarie Moser
00:00 / 00:00

Help Protect Your Athletes’ Brains NOW


What is baseline testing?

Baseline testing is a short screening of computerized cognitive tasks that measure skills commonly affected by a concussion, such as memory, processing speed, reaction time, and attention.Athletes are tested when they are healthy to capture their normal function.If they sustain a concussion, then the doctor will re-test them and compare their post-concussion scores to their baseline scores to help determine when they are healed and ready to return to sports.Importantly, baseline testing is not intelligence or achievement testing and it cannot diagnose a learning, attention or memory disorder.


Who should have baseline testing?

Computerized baseline testing can be performed for athletes who are age 12 to adult.Age appropriate tests are available for younger athletes who need more individualized attention.


How should I prepare the athlete for testing?

The athlete should be well-rested, fed, not ill, and not have exercised in the past three hours. Be sure the athlete knows to take the test seriously and that he or she cannot “pass or fail” it. This is not like school testing but is a set of computerized game-like tasks.


How long does it take?

If all paperwork is completed prior to the testing appointment, then allow approximately 45 minutes.Please note that if the athlete’s baseline is deemed possibly invalid, then the athlete will be asked to re-take the test the same day or asked to return, in order to capture his or her best performance.


What is an invalid baseline?

Invalid baselines can occur 4% to 10% of the time and can be due to a variety of factors, such as not understanding instructions, colorblindness, attention or learning or reading disorders, right-left confusion, distractions or noise during testing, illness, fatigue, poor effort, or not taking the test seriously. For these reasons, it is very important for the test to be taken in a supervised, controlled environment and reviewed by a neuropsychologist who understands brain-behavior relationships.


How can I have my team or group tested?

The Sports Concussion Center of New Jersey provides testing for groups in an environment that is specifically tailored to concussion testing and that is supervised by neuropsychologist doctors who understand sports concussion and know how to interpret and check baseline test results.Arrangements may also be made for off-site testing if your group has suitable space for set-up. The Center and your group will decide on specified times for your group to schedule athletes for testing. The Center will also provide your group with paperwork to be completed prior to testing.


For more information, call SCCNJ at 609.895.1076 for group and individual pricing. Download the Flyer.

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