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August 12, 2011 - August Med School Café - Concussion Awareness in Young Athletes: An Overview of Alabama’s New Concussion Law
The August Med School Café lecture will feature University of South Alabama team physicians and USA physicians. USA Head Football Coach Joey Jones will introduce the speakers and underscore the importance of this educational opportunity for coaches, athletes and parents.

The interactive panel discussion will take place Aug. 25, 2011, at the Mobile Museum of Art in Mobile. Lunch will be served at 11:30 a.m., and the presentation begins at noon.

Dr. Martino, interim chair and associate professor of neurosurgery at the USA College of Medicine, along with USA team physicians Dr. Albert Pearsall, professor of orthopaedic surgery, Dr. R. Brian Bettencourt, assistant professor of family medicine, and Dr. Michael Linder, associate professor of family medicine, will provide an overview of concussion injuries as it relates to athletes, as well as the importance of recognizing symptoms and taking appropriate steps when a concussion is suspected.

According to Dr. Martino, an estimated 30-40 concussions occur each year during student sports activities in our area.

The panel will also review in detail a new state law that took effect in June that forbids young student athletes from playing if a concussion is suspected, until being cleared by a physician. The new law, which is now in effect in 20 states, requires coaches and trainers to learn about the dangers of concussions and the effects sport injuries have on the brain.

The lecture will also cover the Sport Concussion Assessment Tool (SCAT), a tool used by trainers and coaches in the field to quickly assess whether an athlete has had a concussion.

During the talk, the physicians will also discuss the ways athletes can protect themselves from injuries, as well as the many ways coaches can recognize a head injury in an athlete and the appropriate steps they should take when an injury occurs.

The Mobile Museum of Art is located at 4850 Museum Drive in Mobile. To view a map, visit

The Med School Café lecture and lunch are provided free of charge, but reservations are required. For more information or to make reservations, please call Kim Partridge at (251) 460-7770 or e-mail

Med School Café is a free community lecture series sponsored by the USA Physicians Group. Each month, faculty from the USA College of Medicine share their expertise on a specific medical condition, providing insight on the latest treatment available.

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