Dr. John Leddy, director of UB's Concussion Management Clinic, says he's working on a treadmill test for athletes with a concussion. "The idea is to use the test to help to make the return to play process for the NFL and other sports more standardized and scientific," says Leddy. "Our treadmill test is a physiologic stressor for athletes with brain injury or concession to determine if they are ready to return to the physiological stress of the sport."
Leddy says the athlete is considered recovered when the he or she can return to exercise at the maximum heart rate level without exacerbating symptoms. "The idea is to try to reproduce what athletes do what they do on the field, but in a standardized way to make sure they don't go on the field too soon before recovering from the concussion.
Over the next 18 months, the UB researchers will test between 35 and 50 athletes from the Buffalo Bills, the Buffalo Sabres and athletes from Western New York colleges, including UB, who sustain concussions in the 2012-2013 season, as well as healthy control subjects.