Dr Joseph Maroon and the History of Neurosurgery in Sports

Dr Maroon AANS Sports Med article 2019September 2019 – Dr Joseph Maroon is recognized as one of the major contributors to the advancement of neurosurgery in the field of sports medicine.  The American Academy of Neurosurgeons (AANS) recently asked Dr Maroon to discuss some of the sennial milestones he has advanced in the field of sports medicine.  The article, The Neurosurgeons Sports Medicine Laboratory, chronicles the history of spinal cord, brain injury and concussion management in sports.

ThinkFirstHighlights include Dr Maroon’s early observations of the high rate of spinal cord injuries in high school football players in the communities surrounding Pittsburgh.  Along with an initiative by the University of Pittsburgh, Dr Maroon advocated new tackling techniques that ultimately reduce the incidence of injury.  This led to a national program called ThinkFirst, which is still operating throughout major cities in the US.  ThinkFirst’s Mission is to prevent brain, spinal cord and other traumatic injuries through education, research and advocacy.

ImPACTIn 1990, Dr Maroon was the first neurosurgeon to consult on a full time basis to a professional sports team.  Dr Maroon continues to be the the Pittsburgh Steelers team neurosurgeon.  In the article, Dr Maroon relates the “laboratory” of players who ultimately led to major advancements in concussion recognition and return to play decisions.  Dr Maroon along with neuropsychologist, Dr Mark Lovell, developed ImPACT concussion testing, that is now the standard of care in most professional, college and high schools in the US.

Please read the entire article or download it at: Dr Maroon discusses Neurosurgeons Sports Medicine contributions 2019