Date of Award

9-6-2018

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A.

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Abeare, Christopher

Keywords

Concussion, Phenotypes, Profiles, Sport-Related Concussion, Traumatic Brain Injury

Rights

CC-BY-NC-ND

Abstract

OBJECTIVES: Sport-related concussion (SRC) is a mild form of neurotrauma, resulting in transient cognitive deficits and symptoms. Staggering heterogeneity in its clinical manifestation has been observed in practice. The purpose of the current study was to attempt to empirically elucidate neuropsychological subgroups of SRC. METHODS: An archival consecutive clinical case series of 1366 (872 male, 494 female; Mage=15.6, SDage=1.9) post-concussion athletes, referred for neuropsychological testing was utilized in this study. Athletes were administered the Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing (ImPACT), including the Post-Concussion Symptom Scale (PCSS). A priori analyses included Latent Class Analysis (LCA), and post-hoc analyses included cluster analysis, ANOVA and MANOVA. RESULTS: The LCA revealed no definite structure in the data, in either the overall sample or an acute sample (≤7 days post-concussion). There was vast disagreement between fit indices, with some indicating no cluster solution was appropriate. Cluster analysis yielded two cluster solutions, both of which primarily reflected levels of performance rather than distinct neuropsychological clusters. However, one cluster from each sample was comprised of poor cognitive scores and low symptom reporting. CONCLUSIONS: No distinct neuropsychological profiles emerged from the data. Although there was one potentially interesting cluster from each of the solutions, the majority of solutions reflected levels of performance and reporting. Although it is possible that there are no subgroups of SRC, this question is far from resolved.

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