Head Trauma and Concussions in Film and Television Stunt Performers: An Exploratory Study

J Occup Environ Med. 2023 Jan 1;65(1):e21-e27. doi: 10.1097/JOM.0000000000002738. Epub 2022 Nov 4.


OBJECTIVES: The aims of the study were to assess prevalence and management of head impacts in stunt performers and to evaluate performers’ quality of life and ability to work after head injury.

METHODS: Stunt performers completed an online survey about head impacts/head whips history, diagnosed concussions, reasons for not reporting injuries, health care sought after head impacts, attitudes toward on-set concussion management, perceived ability to work as a stunt performer, and health-related quality of life.

RESULTS: One hundred seventy-three performers (80%) indicated at least one head impact/head whip during their stunt career. Of these, 86% exhibited concussion-like symptoms and 38% received one or more concussion diagnoses. Sixty-five percent continued working with concussion-like symptoms. Short Form-12 mental component scores were suggestive of depression in 42%.

CONCLUSIONS: Concussion seems to be a serious occupational health issue in stunt performers. We suggest that concussion management, risk reduction, and education should be addressed in this community.

PMID:36608153 | DOI:10.1097/JOM.0000000000002738

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