To assess the predictive capability of the postconcussion symptom scale (PCSS) of the sport concussion assessment tool (SCAT) III to differentiate concussed and nonconcussed adolescents.
Sixty-nine concussed (15.2 ± 1.6 years old) and 55 control (14.4 ± 1.7 years old) adolescents.
Postconcussion symptom scale.
Two-proportion z-test determined differences in symptom endorsement between groups. To assess the predictive power of the PCSS, we trained an ensemble classifier composed of a forest of 1000 decision trees to classify subjects as concussed, or not concussed, based on PCSS responses. The initial classifier was trained on all 22-concussion symptoms addressed in the PCSS, whereas the second classifier removed concussion symptoms that were not statistically significant between groups.
Concussion symptoms common between groups were trouble falling asleep, more emotional, irritability, sadness, and anxious. After removal, analysis of the second classifier indicated that the 5 leading feature rankings of symptoms were headache, head pressure, light sensitivity, noise sensitivity, and “don't feel right,” which accounted for 52% of the variance between groups.
Collectively, self-reported symptoms through the PCSS can differentiate concussed and nonconcussed adolescents. However, predictability for adolescent patients may be improved by removing emotional and sleep domain symptoms.
*School of Kinesiology, Western University, London, ON, Canada;
Departments of †Health and Rehabilitation Sciences;
¶Statistics and Actuarial Science;
‖Anatomy and Cell Biology; and
**Family Medicine, Western University, London, ON, Canada;
††Fowler Kennedy Sports Medicine Clinic, Western University, London, ON, Canada;
‡‡Department of Paediatrics, Western University, London, ON, Canada;
§§Children's Health Research Institute, London, Ontario, Canada; and
¶¶Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Western University, London, ON, Canada.
Corresponding Author: J. Kevin Shoemaker, PhD, School of Kinesiology, Western University, 1151 Richmond St, London, ON N6A 5B9, Canada (firstname.lastname@example.org).
This study was funded by the Children's Health Foundation.
The authors report no conflicts of interest.
Received January 26, 2018
Accepted October 13, 2018