Sports Concussion Program
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The UCSF Sports Concussion Program is the region's premier center for evaluating and treating head injuries in young athletes. Our team includes experts from specialties such as sports medicine, physical medicine and rehabilitation, neuropsychology, neuroradiology, neurology and neurosurgery. With this combined expertise, the program can evaluate, diagnose and manage virtually any sports concussion and help athletes safely return to school and sports.

Patients can see several specialists in one location on the same day.

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About Concussion

A sports concussion can be a very serious brain injury. Concussions can be caused by a blow to the head, neck or body and require immediate diagnosis and management.

Symptoms of a concussion include:

  • Confusion
  • Difficulty concentrating or remembering things
  • Dizziness or problems with balance or coordination
  • Headaches
  • Insomnia or excessive sleepiness
  • Nausea
  • Problems with balance and coordination

Through the UCSF PlaySafe Program, concussion experts also work with schools throughout the San Francisco Bay Area to treat and raise awareness about concussion and brain injury.

Athletes at participating schools receive a comprehensive evaluation by a sports medicine doctor trained in concussion management, a detailed return-to-play progression program, and consultation with a certified athletic trainer.

The Sports Concussion Program is a collaboration of experts at UCSF Medical Center, UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital and San Francisco General Hospital.

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Depending on your health insurance, you may need a referral from a primary care doctor.

Getting Here

Sports Concussion Program
1500 Owens St., Second Floor
San Francisco, CA 94158
Phone: (415) 353-1915
Fax: (415) 514-6075

Hours: Monday to Friday
8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Research and Clinical Trials

Special Programs

Referring Guidelines

Printable Guidelines for Providers

Clinical Indicators for a Referral

A sports concussion is a brain injury and can be serious. Concussions require immediate recognition and proper management. Getting help soon after an injury by trained specialists in rehabilitation may speed recovery. Consider referring your patient or school athlete to our program if he or she has suffered a blow to the head, neck or body and is experiencing one or more of the following:

  • Confusion
  • Difficulty concentrating or remembering things
  • Dizziness or problems with balance or coordination
  • Headaches
  • Insomnia or excessive sleepiness
  • Nausea

How to Refer

You may refer a patient or school athlete directly to our program by calling (415) 353-1915 or faxing a referral to (415) 514-6075.

UCSF Orthopedic Institute at Mission Bay

1500 Owens St., Second Floor
San Francisco, CA 94158
Phone: (415) 353-1915
Fax: (415) 514-6075
Email: concussion@ucsf.edu
Hours: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Maps and directions: www.ucsfhealth.org/pathway

Recommendations for Patients and School Athletes

If you have referred your patient or school athlete to our program for further evaluation, it is critical that he or she adhere to the following instructions while waiting to be evaluated by a concussion specialist to give the brain time to heal and avoid further injury:

Tips to Aid Recovery

  • Get plenty of sleep and rest, which helps the brain to heal.
  • Stay well hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids.
  • Write down anything that may be harder than usual to remember.
  • If you're easily distracted, try to do one thing at a time. For example, don't try to watch TV while eating dinner.

Restricted Activities

  • Sports, work, school or recreational activities are restricted until a concussion specialist gives you clearance to resume these activities. It's critical that you don't experience another concussion. A repeat concussion can be very dangerous, slow recovery or increase the chance for serious problems.
  • Physically demanding activities (e.g., sports, exercising) or those that require a lot of concentration (e.g., working on the computer, playing video games).
  • Sustained computer use, including computer/video games.
  • Drive a car, ride a bike, or operate heavy equipment until after a concussion specialist gives you clearance. This is because your reaction time may be slower after a concussion.

Treating Physical Symptoms

  • Take the recommended dose of pain relief medications (e.g., Tylenol, Ibuprofen or Motrin) as needed for physical symptoms related to concussion such as headache.

Concussion FAQs

For more information on concussions, please check out the FAQs and fact sheets below.

Related Information

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Condition Information

Our Team

Mitul Kapadia
Mitul Kapadia, MD
Pediatric physiatrist
Carlin Senter
Carlin Senter, MD
Primary care sports medicine specialist
Anthony Luke
Anthony Luke, MPH, MD
Primary care sports medicine specialist
Cindy Chang
Cindy Chang, MD
Primary care sports medicine specialist
William Qubty
William Qubty, MD
Pediatric neurologist and headache specialist
Shannon Lundy
Shannon Lundy, PhD
Pediatric neuropsychologist
Elise Hammond
Elise Hammond
Concussion clinic coordinator