NFL updates concussion protocol after ruling doctors followed it in Tua Tagovailoa case

Written by on October 8, 2022

The NFL and NFL Gamers Affiliation’s investigation into Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa’s analysis for a concussion discovered each unbiased medical professionals and staff medical workers adopted the league’s concussion protocols, in a press release launched Saturday.

The most important takeaway from the NFL’s findings: “The end result on this case shouldn’t be what was meant when the protocols have been drafted,” the NFL and NFLPA’s assertion mentioned.

The change to the league’s concussion protocol, efficient instantly for Sunday’s Week 5 video games, is the addition of the time period “ataxia” as a no-go symptom. Any participant exhibiting indicators of ataxia – an abnormality of stability/stability, motor coordination or dysfunctional speech attributable to a neurological concern – is prohibited from returning to a sport.

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Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa lays on the turf after taking a hit in Week 3 against Buffalo.

“The Protocol exists to determine a excessive commonplace of concussion take care of every participant whereby each medical skilled engages in a significant and rigorous examination of the player-patent,” the NFL and NFLPA mentioned within the assertion.

“To that finish, the events stay dedicated to persevering with to guage our Protocol to make sure it displays the meant conservative strategy to evaluating player-patients for potential head accidents.” 

The change was hinted at by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell throughout a information convention in London earlier than the Inexperienced Bay Packers and New York Giants sport.

Particularly, to the investigation medical doctors adopted the protocols when evaluating Tagovailoa through the Dolphins’ win over the Payments on Sept. 25, the NFL and NFLPA mentioned:

•Tagovailoa was cleared by a staff doctor following session from an unbiased physician after the concussion protocol was adopted, and allowed to return to the sport.

•Medical doctors additionally decided the gross motor instability Tagovailoa confirmed by stumbling after making an attempt to take a number of steps following his head hitting the bottom was on account of a again damage he sustained earlier within the sport. Medical doctors didn’t study Tagovailoa’s again after the autumn, and as an alternative performed the concussion protocol. They relied on an earlier check of his again through the sport.

•Tagovailoa confirmed no indicators or signs of concussion throughout his locker room examination, the rest of the Payments sport or all through the next week.

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Tagovailoa turned nationwide information after the Payments sport, however that solely intensified 4 days later when  he suffered a concussion after being tackled by Cincinnati Bengals defensive lineman Josh Tipou within the second quarter of a Thursday night time sport.

Tagovailoa was handled at a Cincinnati hospital, and flew residence with the Dolphins following the sport whereas sporting a neck brace. Tagovailoa’s evaluations for head and neck accidents have been clear, Dolphins coach Mike McDaniel mentioned final week.

The NFLPA ultimately fired the independent doctor who treated Tagovailoa after he was injured towards Buffalo.

Tagovailoa stays in concussion protocol and gained’t play within the Dolphins’ subsequent sport on the highway towards the New York Jets on Sunday. He additionally gained’t journey with the staff to New Jersey.

“He’s diligently going via the method. He’s nonetheless within the protocol clearly,” McDaniel mentioned of Tagovailoa, who has been in concussion protocol for greater than every week. “There are a number of exterior specialists that we’re additionally using. And we’re going to take it from there.”

Comply with Safid Deen on Twitter @Safid_Deen

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