Understanding Change on ImPACT and CVS Following a Sports-Related Concussion

Archives of Clinical Neuropsychology -


Womble, M., M. Rohling, B. Hill and E. Corley.



Objective: The purpose of this study is to examine the psychometric characteristics of two computerized neuropsychological screening batteries designed to assess sports-related concussion. Stability of test scores and calculation of reliable change con- fidence intervals were assessed using a sample the batteries are commonly used with. Findings will help clinicians interpret test results based on an understanding of measurement error for test–retest data and sensitivity of the batteries. Methods: Immediate Postconcussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing (ImPACT) and Concussion Vital Signs (CVS) were used to measure aspects of cognitive functioning. Participants were 100 high school and college student athletes who completed ImPACT and/or CVS twice for the purpose of a test–retest study. Many of these student athletes completed both batteries. The average age was 18.6 years (SD ¼ 1.6) and mean time between tests was 349 days. Results: Overall, test battery mean was 102.2 (SD ¼ 11.1) at time one and 100.4 (SD ¼ 11.4) at time two for ImPACT. Pearson’s test–retest correlation coeffi- cients based on the overall test battery score was .57 for ImPACT. Data were also collected for CVS and similar results were found. These results for CVS will be presented along with test–retest correlation coefficients for the individual domains of both computerized batteries. Conclusions: Results indicate that test–retest reliability was promising and comparable among the two computerized batteries. Reliability issues are perhaps the most important factor hindering use of computerized batteries in assessing sports-related concussion. More research and further refinement of these batteries to improve reliability is needed.

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