During a scrimmage last fall, Anujin Dashdorj, a junior on the girls’ varsity basketball team at Richard Montgomery High School, collided with an opposing player and fell to the floor. Anujin resumed playing and didn’t notice anything wrong until later that night, when she experienced headaches and memory loss.

The next day, Anujin told her coach about her symptoms. Her coach referred her to Tori Simonetti, a certified athletic trainer with Adventist HealthCare Rehabilitation who helps student athletes at the Rockville, Maryland, high school. Adventist HealthCare Rehabilitation has 13 trainers working with high school athletes at Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS).

“Upon my initial examination, it was clear that Anujin had suffered a concussion from her fall on the basketball court,” Tori said.

To further evaluate Anujin’s condition, Tori consulted with Trey Godwin, MD, an Adventist HealthCare Rehabilitation physiatrist who specializes in sports medicine.

“Concussions are commonly undiagnosed because the symptoms don’t always appear right away,” Dr. Godwin said. “Symptoms can include headaches, nausea, dizziness, sensitivity to light, fatigue and difficulty concentrating.”

After symptoms lessen and students are medically cleared by a licensed healthcare provider, MCPS requires students to follow the state’s “return-to-play protocol.” Tori worked closely with Anujin to supervise her during the six stages of the rehabilitation program.

“The first stage begins with light aerobic activity, such as jogging for 20 minutes,” Tori said. “Students transition to a progressive resistance training workout, which can consist of 10 minutes on a stationary bike, sprints, lunges and strength training exercises. In the final stage, they return to play in a game.”

Nearly two weeks later, Anujin was symptom-free and playing basketball with her team without restrictions.

“Tori and Dr. Godwin were there every step of the way to help me return to playing basketball after my concussion,” Anujin shared. “Now I can play just as well as I did before my concussion.”

After the team’s regular season, Anujin was selected to the all-state team by the Maryland Basketball Coaches Association. She recently started her senior year at Richard Montgomery High School and is planning to play basketball in college.

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