NEW RESEARCH: Gender Differences After Concussion Injury

Harry Kerasidis, MD, neurologist and co-founder of XLNTbrain LLC presented new research findings to guide concussion detection and treatment among the genders during the American Academy of Neurology 2015 Sport Concussion Conference, held July 24-26 in Denver, Colorado.

Dr. Kerasidis said his new research confirmed the previous study reported last year (, as well as pointed to a possible connection between the severity of migraines and the recovery time. Here’s a synapsis:


The XLNTbrain Sport™ Sport Concussion Symptom Checklist (XLNTbrain-SCL) was administered to 66 collegiate athletes, ages 18-26 (43 male, 23 female) withjn three days of the concussion injury. Gender differences were compared across seven domains, including:

  • Cognitive
  • Vestibular (balance
  • Sleep
  • Migraine
  • Mood
  • Worry
  • Anger


In our previous study, we found that female athletes endorse (or acknowledge) concussion-related symptoms at baseline in Total Symptom Score and migraine, vestibular, sleep, worry, and mood domains significantly more often than males.

In this present study, we find that college females report more concussion symptoms in their first post-injury assessment in Total Score, and the cognitive, migraine domains without significant differences in the mood, worry, anger, sleep or vestibular domains. These gender differences should be taken into account when assessing athletes for concussion-related symptoms.

Gender differences in days to recovery was not found, however, the moderate correlations between migraine scores (stronger in females) and weak correlations with the Total Score, migraine, sleep, worry, mood and cognitive soccer with recovery days, may help in developing prognostic expectations in return to play decisions.

We also found some evidence to suggest that there is a correlation between the severity of a migraine and the length of recovery time. The more headache pain, the longer the recovery period.