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Early Conversations about Concussions were Hard: AAPM&R Vice President Scott Laker, MD


Physiatrist Scott Laker, MD, vice president of the American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, began his care for concussion patients at the University of Washington just as the Zackery Lystedt Law was taking shape.

During a tackle in a school football game in 2006, 13-year-old Zack Lystedt sustained a head injury. He returned to play after a brief time out but collapsed shortly after the game ended. He spent 93 days in the hosptial and it was nearly 9 months before he relearned how to speak. Nobody knew he had a concussion after the hit.

Concussion awareness was extremely low at the time, explained Laker in a recent conversation with Patient Care.® It was hard convincing kids, parents, coaches that concussion was a signficant injury.

In the video that follows, Laker describes the evolution of concussion care while he has been in practice and his early role in education and outreach.

Scott Laker, MD, is vice president of the American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, associate professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation in the University of Colorado School of Medicine's department of physical medicine and rehabilitation, and associate dean of clinical affairs at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, in Denver. Laker previously served as a member of the University of Washington Sports and Spine Physicians and was a founding member of the Seattle Sports Concussion Program. He has cared for athletes at all levels of participation from adolescents to adults and from amateurs to professionals.

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