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Auditory Processing After Sport-Related Concussions

Turgeon, Christine1; Champoux, François1,2; Lepore, Franco1; Leclerc, Suzanne3; Ellemberg, Dave1,3

doi: 10.1097/AUD.0b013e31821209d6
Brief Reports

Objective: The aim of the study is to investigate whether sport-related concussions disrupt auditory processes.

Design: Sixteen university athletes participated in the study: eight had one or more sport-related concussions, and eight never experienced a concussion. The Frequency Pattern Sequence test, the Duration Pattern Sequence test, the Synthetic Sentence Identification test, and the Staggered Spondaic Word test were used to assess auditory processing.

Results: All nonconcussed athletes have normal auditory processing. In contrast, more than half of the concussed athletes had deficits for one or more of the auditory processing tests.

Conclusions: The pattern of results suggests that sport-related concussions can disrupt the neurological mechanisms implicated in several auditory processes, including monaural low-redundancy speech recognition, tone pattern recognition, and dichotic listening.

Auditory processing was evaluated in 16 university athletes with no history of concussion (8) and with a history of one or more sports-related concussions (8). All nonconcussed athletes showed normal auditory processing, while 60% of the concussed athletes had deficits in one or more of the auditory processing tasks.

1Centre de Recherche en Neuropsychologie et Cognition, Université de Montréal; 2Centre de recherche interdisciplinaire en réadaptation du Montréal métropolitain, Institut Raymond-Dewar; and 3Département de Kinésiologie, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Québec, Canada.

This work was supported by grants from the Canadian Institutes for Health Research and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (to D. E.).

Address for correspondence: Dave Ellemberg, PhD, Département de Kinésiologie, Université de Montréal, 2100 Edouard-Montpetit, Montréal, Quebec, H3T 1C5, Canada. E-mail:

Received August 24, 2010; accepted January 16, 2011.

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.