Brain Sci. 2023 Sep 12;13(9):1310. doi: 10.3390/brainsci13091310.
Background: Sport-related concussion (SRC) is a common sport injury. Females are participating in sports at increasing rates, and there is growing awareness that female athletes may be more vulnerable to SRC. Objectives: We aimed to identify sex differences in epidemiology, clinical manifestation and assessment of SRC and examine how these relate to the 6th International Conference on Concussion in Sport (ICCS). Methods: We conducted a scoping review of the Medline database and identified 58 studies examining the effects of sex on SRC in collegiate and high school athletes that were written in English and published in a peer-reviewed journal between March 2012 and March 2022. Results: We found that female athletes suffer higher rates of concussion in sex-comparable sports, in particular soccer. Female athletes experience more somatic symptoms-headache/migraine/sleep disturbance-and may take longer to recover from concussion. Sex differences were also identified regarding some aspects of sideline concussion assessment with the Sport Concussion Assessment Tool. Conclusions: Females are at greater risk and experience SRC differently than males; this is mostly likely due to a combination of biomechanical factors, differences in neck musculature and hormonal and social factors. Sex differences are not widely addressed by the 6th ICSS, which informs many sports’ concussion protocols.